If you haven’t seen it, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is the true sequel fans of the late Ivan Reitman’s brainchild have been waiting years for. Cassius Life had the opportunity to speak with one of the original Ghostbusters, Ernie Hudson.
Directed by Jason Reitman, son of Ghostbusters creator Ivan Reitman, Ghostbusters: Afterlife served as the perfect film to please original fans of the film franchise while giving new fans something to hold onto. The film follows Callie (Carrie Coon) and her two kids, Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and Phoebe (Mckenna Grace), who relocate from the big city to a small town that is hiding a huge dark secret. Phoebe, an intelligent loner, gets quite friendly with the ghost of her late estranged grandfather Egon Spengler who introduces her to the Ghostbusting lineage. From there, Phoebe and Trevor link up with the town’s youth Podcast (Logan Kim) and Lucky, brilliantly played by Celeste O’Connor, to take on a world-ending threat her late grandfather dedicated his life to keeping at bay.
While the film introduces us to a new generation of Ghostbusters (no, not those from Ghostbusters from the 2016 film), the original Ghostbusters do arrive on the scene to help save the world once again. Cassius Life spoke with Ernie Hudson, who plays the OG Ghostbuster Winston Zeddemore. Hudson is on record talking about the film 1984 that introduced his character and the love/hate relationship he for his role. As years went on, Ghostbusters fans always felt Winston Zeddemore didn’t get enough love in the films, and his arc wasn’t that great, thankful that is something Ghostbusters: Afterlife corrects.
In our Zoom interview with the iconic character, we touched on all of that, plus the future of Winston Zeddemore in likely sequel following Ghostbusters: Afterlife. Step into the interview below.
Cassius Life: You have been very open about your love-hate for the character Winston Zeddemore. Did his new arc in Ghostbusters: Afterlife play any part in your decision to return?
Ernie Hudson: Well, I think I probably would’ve come back because it has been such an important part of my life over the last almost 40 years. And any issues I had regarding Ghostbusters had nothing to do with the fans because the fans have been just so supportive and so loyal. But I think the biggest decision to come back was the fact that Jason Reitman, who I’ve known since he was a kid, I knew he would always be fair, and I knew that he loved the franchise as much. And I know that the tribute he made to Harold Ramis, I thought, was really special.
But I also appreciated the fact that he acknowledged Winston and gave Winston that extra dimension of being a human being that… Not that the other movies… But it gave substance to it, and I really appreciated that. But I knew that Jason would do it right. So that was my biggest reason for wanting. Nah, no matter what it would’ve been, if the money was right, you know I would’ve been showing up for work. Let’s get real. But I wanted to do this movie because Jason was at the head of it.
Well, I think I probably would’ve come back because it has been such an important part of my life over the last almost 40 years. And any issues I had regarding Ghostbusters had nothing to do with the fans because the fans have been just so supportive and so loyal.
CL: Yeah, he did an excellent job. Now, Ghostbusters: Afterlife does a very good job of paying homage to Ivan Reitman’s original film and rewarded lifelong fans a movie that they’ve always been waiting for. But at its core, it introduces a new cast of Ghostbusters and hopes to bring in new fans. Do you think there’ll be more Ghostbusters films in the future?
EH: Yeah, I think it depends on what they do. You know, this movie paid homage to the other first two movies especially, and it brought the Ghostbuster family, that’s all over the world, together, and it’s a good movie. But I think to move forward, where do you go with that? You know? And that’s really what I’m looking forward to seeing, what that looks like. If there are ghosts, they’re all over the world. You know what I mean? Ghosts in Harlem, and there are ghosts supposedly everywhere.
And they can get really scary, or they can look like Slimer or whatever, so the possibilities… But how they build that Ghostbuster universe, that what we want to go and take that journey with, the next movie will determine that, and I think there will be a next movie, the fact that this one is successful. But I think the next movie’s going to be really, really important because it won’t be able to ride on the other movies. It’ll need to stand on its own so… And then whatever it is, I hope I’m a part of it, but we’ll see.
But I think the next movie’s going to be really, really important because it won’t be able to ride on the other movies. It’ll need to stand on its own so… And then whatever it is, I hope I’m a part of it, but we’ll see.
CL: Absolutely. You know, speaking of that, if there is a next movie, what kind of role do you see Winston playing in another Ghostbuster movie? Maybe being a mentor to the new Ghostbusters, or just suiting up with them and doing more ghost-busting?
EH: Yeah. Well, you saw the last scene in the movie, right?
EH: So now Winston’s got a billion dollars. I’m cool right there, you know? And he bought the car and the firehouse. And the fact that he says he’ll always be a Ghostbuster, I think, he’ll definitely be, I mean, maybe that guy who runs the thing or whatever. I mean, I don’t know. They never tell me if there’s anything. I’d hate to get my hopes up and suddenly Eddie Murphy’s Winston. You know? This is Hollywood, so, I don’t think he’ll be the guy running around necessarily. That’ll be to the younger people, probably. I mean, this is all just me. You know? Certainly, he’s physically able to do that, but yeah. So Sam Jackson in all the Marvel movies, whatever, you know that character he plays, it shows up, so I don’t know. But my line from the first movie, hey, man, if there’s a steady paycheck in it, I believe anything you say so.
Cassius Life: Amen to that.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is available on Blu-Ray, and purchased and downloaded via your favorite movie streaming services.
Photo: Getty Images