There’s been a lot of backlash for the recently announced Ghostbusters reboot, and Kristen Wiig seems to be pretty “bummed” about it. The most shocking of the comments surrounding the movie stem from a group of online antagonizers that mounted a campaign against the female version of the 80s film. They have shared the opinion that the women cast to take over the roles of stars such as Billy Murray and Dan Aykroyd won’t do the film justice.
Wiig told the Los Angeles Times how she felt about the comments surrounding the film.
“The fact there was so much controversy because we were women was surprising to me. Some people said some really not nice things about the fact that there were women. It didn’t make me mad, it just really bummed me out. We’re really honoring those movies.”
This isn’t the first comment an affiliate of the Ghostbusters reboot has made, either. There have been many people against the film from the beginning, and director Paul Feig, who has worked with both McCarthy and Wiig in the past during the making of the film Bridesmaids, specifically spoke out about it, calling it “some of the most vile, misogynistic crap I’ve ever seen in my life.” He also stated as follows.
“I just don’t understand why it’s ever an issue anymore. I’ve promoted both Bridesmaids and The Heat, and myself and my cast are still hit constantly with the question, ‘will this answer the question of whether women can be funny?’ I really cannot believe we’re still having this conversation.”
When asked about what he thought about the film being remade, Ernie Hudson, who played the role of Winston Zeddermore in the original, called the film a “bad idea.” That comment alone gave him a major role in the backlash. However, since that time, he has explained that the comment wasn’t directed towards women, but towards a remake in general. He has also eaten his words because he now has a small role in the movie.
However, not everyone thinks it’s a bad idea. Feig and the makers of the Ghostbusters reboot have gotten Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weaver, and Annie Potts to play a small role. They were not able to convince Rick Moranis to join in, but they have been able to get ahold of other big names, namely Chris Hemsworth, who will play the secretary for the women’s team.
For those who haven’t been following information on the reboot very closely, it’s going to follow the outline of the original film, but with females at the helm instead of men. Kate McKinnon, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, and Kristen Wiig will be teaming up to fight ghosts.
This film may have started out as an attempt to bring back the hilarity of an 80s classic, among the same vein as the hundreds of other reboots being rehashed today. But it’s turned into a film that will now need to defend women’s rights in film making. As Feig put it so eloquently, we shouldn’t be asking the question, “Can women be funny?” We should be celebrating their strengths and achievements, particularly when they’re given such a golden opportunity. This new Ghostbusters reboot, and the publicity surrounding it, will no doubt take on a political agenda as a result.
For those that are excited to see these dynamic ladies take over, you don’t have long to wait. You’ll be able to see Kristen Wiig and her powerful co-stars on the big screen on July 22, 2016.
[Image via Noam Galai / Getty Images]