Everything We Know About ‘Ghostbusters 4’ — Plot Details, Confirmed Cast Members, and More

in Movies & TV

The Ecto-1 in Ghostbusters Afterlife

Credit: Sony Pictures

Ghostbusters 4 (2023) will be the fourth installment in the main Ghostbusters series, and the fifth live-action Ghostbusters film (although many are referring to the upcoming film as Ghostbusters 5, despite the 2016 reboot not being even remotely canon!).

Nevertheless, while we know that it’s expected to follow on from Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021), naturally the filmmakers are keeping specifics under wraps. We do, however, already know quite a bit about the sequel, from codenames to cast members, and filming locations to release dates.

Dan Aykroyd as Ray Stantz in Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

We also know that Ghostbusters 4 is just one of three sequels, as Ghostbusters: Afterlife will also be followed up with a limited edition comic book from Dark Horse Publishing some time next year, as well as an asymmetrical multiplayer game in the form of Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed (2022), which is being released on October 18 this year.

But there’s a lot more than just live-action movies, comic books, and multiplayer video games happening in the Ghostbusters universe — there’s also a virtual reality-based game on the horizon, as well as a Ghostbusters animated movie and a Ghostbusters animated series, both of which are currently in development with Sony Pictures Animation and Netflix.

Lucky Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

These announcements were made on Ghostbusters Day (June 8) this year, by Ghostbusters: Afterlife director Jason Reitman and writer Gil Kenan. For now though, let’s open the Ecto-Containment Unit and find out everything there is to know about Ghostbusters 4.

But be warned — this article contains things that will turn you white!

Related: Could an Open-World ‘Ghostbusters’ Game Be on the Horizon?!

Ghostbusters 4 Synopsis

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Ghostbusters 4 will serve as a sequel to Ghostbusters: Afterlife, but exactly how much time will separate the two films remains to be seen. Either way, we know that it will “continue the Spengler family story”, as confirmed by Jason Reitman and Gil Kenan (both of whom are presumably attached to the project) at this year’s Ghostbusters Day event.

They also confirmed that the film will take place in New York City, bringing the Ghostbusters franchise back to its Manhattan roots. Ghostbusters (1984), Ghostbusters II (1989), and the reboot Ghostbusters: Answer the Call (2016), all take place in New York, while Ghostbusters: Afterlife is the only one to have ventured elsewhere (Oklahoma).

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Filming locations haven’t been confirmed, but  as the sequel will take place in New York City, it’s reasonable to expect it to shoot on location, just like Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters II, and Ghostbusters: Answer the Call, with many interior shots likely being filmed in Los Angeles.

During the Ghostbusters Day event, the official Ghostbusters Twitter account shared the following in announcing the film, which also confirms that it’s shooting under the name Firehouse, in reference, of course, to the iconic Ghostbusters’ firehouse-headquarters in Tribeca, Manhattan.

Stay Puft Ghostbusters
Credit: Sony Pictures

Check out the tweet below:

“The last time we saw Ecto-1, it was driving back into Manhattan: the home of Ghostbusters. That’s where our story begins. The code name is FIREHOUSE. — @Jason Reitman, @GilKenan #GhostbustersDay”

Related: ‘Ghostbusters 2’ Is a Better Sequel Than ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ — Here’s Why!

Ghostbusters 4 Cast

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

No cast members have been officially confirmed for Ghostbusters 4, however, recent interviews have seen a number of actors from Ghostbusters: Afterlife heavily suggest their involvement with the upcoming sequel.

Logan Kim, who plays Podcast in the 2021 sequel, told Ghostbusters Ireland, “I’m waiting for the Ghostbusters [4] script. When that comes in, I’m going to be very excited.” So it sure sounds like we’ll be seeing Podcast return in Ghostbusters 4. But who else?

Podcast Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Well, more recently, Ghostbusters legend Ernie Hudson, who plays Winston Zeddemore in the original two films and last year’s sequel, spoke to Moviefone, during which he was asked if he would be reprising his Ghostbusters character in a future movie. Here’s what he said in response:

“I think so. I think he’s definitely tied into the whole ‘Ghostbusters’ world. He’s a businessman now who has this international corporation, but I’ll always be a Ghostbuster. So, I think as long as there are ‘Ghostbusters’ movies, and Winston can put on the backpack and the jumpsuit still fits, we’ll see Winston involved. We are in Hollywood, but I certainly would love to be a part of, and we’ll see how it unfolds.”

Ernie Hudson Ghostbusters II
Credit: Sony Pictures

And in a recent interview with ComicBook.com, while promoting her new Peacock show A Friend of the Family (2022), McKenna Grace talked about reprising her role as Phoebe Spengler in Ghostbusters 4, saying:

“I’m constantly pressuring Jason Reitman, our director, I’m always trying to figure out what the story is. I literally have no ounce of a clue what the story is. If I knew about a Marvel film or if I knew about Ghostbusters, I’d be sitting here, and I’d be like, ‘I have no clue, and it’s driving me nuts.’ I’m just excited to do a second one. I’m just excited to be Phoebe.”

Phoebe Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

It remains to be seen whether or not Dan Aykroyd and Bill Murray will reprise their roles as Dr. Ray Stantz and Dr. Peter Venkman in Ghostbusters 4, but Ernie Hudson’s Winston Zeddemore is a huge possibility, as he’s clearly an integral part to where things will go next.

In Ghostbusters: Afterlife‘s post-credits scene, Winston hints to Janine Melnitz (Annie Potts) that he intends to restart the Ghostbusters franchise using his own successful enterprise, before we see him opening to the doors to the old firehouse, where the Ecto-Containment Unit is flashing red.

Winston Zeddemore Ghostbusters
Credit: Sony Pictures

The film could also call upon characters from the wider Ghostbusters universe, particularly those often used in IDW Publishing’s long-running “Ghostbusters” comic book series, such as Kylie Griffin (who is voiced by Tara Strong in 1997’s cartoon show Extreme Ghostbusters).

It could even see the return of characters from the widely controversial Ghostbusters reboot, seeing as the multiverse has become a popular trend in films these days. Either way, let’s hope that Ghostbusters 4 does a better job at world-building than its 2021 predecessor.

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Despite being a solid entry in the Ghostbusters franchise, while serving as a love letter to both the original 1984 film and the late Harold Ramis, who plays Dr. Egon Spengler in the first two installments, Ghostbusters: Afterlife retreads the same old Ghostbusters territory.

Not only does it bring in overused Ghostbusters villains such as Gozer the Gozerian (Olivia Wilde) and the StayPuft Marshmallow Man, it’s bursting at the seams with Easter eggs. It’s still wonderful seeing all four of the original Ghostbusters share the same scene, though.

Related: 7 Bizarre Facts You Didn’t Know About ‘Ghostbusters’ (1984)

Ghostbusters 4 Trailer

Ivo Shandor Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Unfortunately, as much as we’d love to shout the words, “We got one!”, as Ghostbusters 4 is currently in production, there’s no trailer. There are, however, trailers for the upcoming video games, Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed and Ghostbusters: VR (TBA), which we’re sure will keep your Slimer-like appetite for all things Ghostbusters satisfied in the meantime.

Check them out below:

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed

Ghostbusters: VR

Related: All 4 ‘Ghostbusters’ Movies Ranked Worst to Best

Ghostbusters 4 Release Date

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Ghostbusters 4 will be released next year on December 20, 2023. But does this mean it will be a Christmas movie? Only time will tell, although Ghostbusters II is widely considered to be a Christmas movie (if anything, though, it’s a New Year’s Eve movie).

The new video game Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed will be released on October 18, and Ghostbusters VR is expected some time next year. The Ghostbusters animated series and Ghostbusters animated movie have no release dates as yet.

Related: The 2016 Reboot Wasn’t the First Female-Led ‘Ghostbusters’

Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

As per the Ghostbusters/Sony Pictures website, here’s the synopsis for Ghostbusters: Afterlife:

From director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman, comes the next chapter in the original Ghostbusters universe. In Ghostbusters: Afterlife, when a single mom and her two kids arrive in a small town, they begin to discover their connection to the original ghostbusters and the secret legacy their grandfather left behind. The film is written by Jason Reitman & Gil Kenan.

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: Sony Pictures

Related: Did You Miss This Epic Crossover Between the Original ‘Ghostbusters’ and the 2016 Reboot?

Ghostbusters: Afterlife stars McKenna Grace (Phoebe), Logan Kim (Podcast), Celeste O’Connor (Lucky), Finn Wolfhard (Trevor), Carrie Coon (Callie), Annie Potts (Janine Melnitz), Sigourney Weaver (Dana Barrett), Paul Rudd (Gary Grooberson), Olivia Wilde (Gozer the Gozerian), JK Simmons (Ivo Shandor), Bill Murray (Dr. Peter Venkman), Dan Aykroyd (Dr. Ray Stantz), and Ernie Hudson (Winston Zeddemore).

Ghostbusters Afterlife
Credit: IGN

Related: A Guide to the ENTIRE ‘Ghostbusters’ Franchise

Are you excited for Ghostbusters 4? Let us know in the comments down below!

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