This weekend marks the 30th anniversary of Ghostbusters, which came, saw, and kicked Mr. Stay Puft’s ass in the summer of 1984. The hilarious, special-effects-laden adventure about Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and the late Harold Ramis’ trio of disgraced academics, who luck into the paranormal extermination racket just as supernatural creatures try to bring about the end of times, dominated the box office and had virtually every American humming Ray Parker Jr.’s theme song and asking the rhetorical question, “Who you gonna call?” READ FULL STORY
Tag: Harold Ramis (1-9 of 9)
Most things come with a “past due” date, and that includes directing jobs. For Ivan Reitman, the moment he decided to bow out of helming the long-gestating Ghostbusters III occurred when he returned from his friend Harold Ramis’ funeral, held in Chicago last month.
“It wasn’t that hard,” Reitman told EW of the decision. “When I came back from the funeral, I thought it would be better to turn the director’s chores over to someone else and let me produce it.” READ FULL STORY
Ivan Reitman has decided that he will not return to direct the next installment of Ghostbusters, EW has confirmed.
After producing and directing the previous two films and staying with the third project for years, Reitman will produce and help Sony find a new director for the film, which is eyeing an early 2015 shoot in New York. Deadline first reported the news.
Bill Murray, making a rare Oscar appearance less than a week after the death of Harold Ramis, made a poignant shout-out to his old friend while presenting the award for Best Cinematography. After announcing the nominees, Murray added, “Oh, we forgot one. Harold Ramis for Caddyshack, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day.”
The audience applauded warmly, Murray apologized — needlessly — for stealing the moment, and then the prize was awarded to Gravity‘s Emmanuel Lubezki, who won for the first time after six nominations.
Murray and Ramis knew each other before they were famous, coming up together in the Chicago comedy scene and then working together in New York. Ramis would co-write Animal House, and then join Murray behind the scenes of Meatballs, Caddyshack, and Stripes, the latter two which he directed. They co-starred in Ghostbusters, and then made Groundhog Day together in 1993. Ramis was never nominated for an Oscar, but his Groundhog Day script, which he co-wrote with Danny Rubin, won the BAFTA Award.
Harold Ramis met Bill Murray when the latter was still a teenager in the 1960s. Ramis, who was six years older, worked with Murray’s brother, Brian, at Second City in Chicago, and when he visited the Murray home in Wilmette, Ill., for the first time, Brian took him to meet Bill — at the golf course, aptly enough, where Bill ran the refreshment stand.
All three men would end up working together extensively, but it was Harold and Bill’s collaborations that defined big-screen comedy — beginning with Meatballs in 1979, running through Caddyshack, Stripes, and Ghostbusters, and culminating with Groundhog Day in 1993. The latter is widely considered both men’s best work, and though they had a falling out after that movie and never worked together again, many fans couldn’t help but think of Ramis and Murray together when they heard the sad news yesterday that Ramis had died at 69, after battling autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis for four years.
In a statement released to TIME by his lawyer, Murray said: “Harold Ramis and I together did the National Lampoon Show off Broadway, Meatballs, Stripes, Caddyshack, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day. He earned his keep on this planet. God bless him.”
Harold Ramis, comedy legend behind 'Caddyshack,' 'Ghostbusters,' and 'Groundhog Day,' dies at age 69
With his sly, Cheshire cat grin and twinkling, half-mast eyes hidden behind owlish glasses, Harold Ramis always gave the impression of a guy who was guarding the punchline to the world’s funniest joke. And it’s quite possible he was. After all, if anyone had the merry-prankster genius to conceive it, polish it into a jeweler-precise gem, and deliver it with crack comic timing, it was Ramis, who passed away early Monday morning at age 69 from complications of autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis, a rare disease that involves the swelling of blood vessels.
Although Ramis became a familiar face on both the small and big screens thanks to his deadpan appearances on the seminal ’70s variety show SCTV, and later in 1981’s Stripes (as the straight-man screw-up Russell Ziskey) and 1984’s Ghostbusters (as lab-coated uber-nerd Dr. Egon Spengler), he never achieved the same thousand-watt stardom as co-stars like Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, and most famously and frequently, Bill Murray. Nor did he seem interested in courting it.
Ramis always seemed to shine the brightest when the spotlight was aimed on others and he could stand off to the side feeding them their most indelible gags. Not surprisingly, his greatest success came as a screenwriter (Animal House, Meatballs) and director (Caddyshack, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Groundhog Day). Chances are, if you were born any time between the JFK and second Reagan administrations, your comic sensibility was largely set in stone by Ramis. He not only put a generation in stitches, he let them in on the joke. READ FULL STORY
Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis were perhaps best known for fighting ghosts, but the pair worked together both on and off screen. In addition to acting together in Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II, Ramis and Aykroyd also had a hand in writing both films. And with the recent news of Ramis’ death, Aykroyd said goodbye to a friend:
“Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of my brilliant, gifted, funny friend, co-writer/performer and teacher Harold Ramis. May he now get the answers he was always seeking,” Aykroyd said in an email.
Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman also released a statement to EW about his friend’s passing:
“The world has lost a wonderful, truly original, comedy voice with the passing of Harold Ramis,” Reitman said. “He possessed the most agile mind I’ve ever witnessed. He always had the clearest sense of what was funny and how to create something in a new clever way. He was very generous about making everyone around him look better and smarter. Harold had an extraordinary impact on my career and I loved him like a brother. My heart goes out to his children, and his lovely wife, Erica. He will be profoundly missed.”
Harold Ramis, the man behind films such as Groundhog Day and Caddyshack, died this morning from complications relating to auto-immune inflammatory vasculitis. Ramis had battled the condition for the past four years and was surrounded by family and friends in his Chicago home when he died. He was 69.
Ramis’ big break came in 1978, when he co-wrote National Lampoon’s Animal House, after which he went on to co-write Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Ghostbusters II. Ramis made his directorial debut with 1980’s Caddyshack, followed by National Lampoon’s Vacation. His most recent project was 2009’s Year One, which starred Jack Black and Michael Cera.
Ramis is survived by his wife, Erica, sons Julian and Daniel, daughter Violet, and two grandchildren.
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