The ‘Ghostbusters’ scene Bill Murray calls his favourite
(Credit: Netflix)


The 'Ghostbusters' scene Bill Murray calls his favourite

The original Ghostbusters movie is now streaming on Netflix. Relive the iconic 1984 classic that combines supernatural thrills and comedic genius. Join Venkman, Stantz, Spengler, and Zeddemore as they battle ghosts in New York City. Perfect for both nostalgic fans and new viewers, it’s a must-watch.

Ivan Reitman’s Ghostbusters has become such a landmark for both studio comedy and effects-heavy filmmaking since its release in 1984 that it’s difficult to believe the studio was far from convinced it would be a success given its substantial budget and outlandish premise.

The difficulties even extended into casting, with Eddie Murphy famously turning down the opportunity to play Winston Zeddemore after determining the concept to be “a crock”, while John Belushi was writer and star Dan Aykroyd’s first choice to play the part that eventually became Peter Venkman before Bill Murray came aboard.

Even after agreeing to share the screen with former Saturday Night Live castmate Aykroyd, there were concerns over whether or not he’d actually read the script and commit unless his demands were met, as producer Joe Medjuck revealed to Entertainment Weekly: “I’ve heard a rumour and truly don’t know how true this is, that Bill told Columbia he’d do Ghostbusters if they’d let him do The Razor’s Edge. So he was actually shooting The Razor’s Edge before Ghostbusters while the writing was taking place.”

Even though he had a reputation for being a free spirit even back then, Medjuck believed in Murray’s dedication to the project based on the number of pre-existing relationships he had on set: “He had said he would come. And Bill and Harold go back a long way. And Bill and Danny obviously. And Ivan and Bill. They all went back a long way.”

There was plenty of improvisation in the film, too, even if Aykroyd found himself growing exasperated trying to convince himself that Murray would even get around to reading the screenplay: “Whenever you can actually put a script into Billy’s hand, as if you were a process server, you gotta look him in the eye and say, ‘You did receive this.’”

The titular team may have conspired to save New York City from a Gozer’s otherworldly takeover and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man’s trail of destruction, but it was actually one of Venkman’s first and most character-driven scenes in Ghostbusters that was named by Reitman as one Murray enjoyed above all others.

In the DVD commentary track (per Film School Rejects), the filmmaker noted the introductory scene to Venkman’s charismatically conniving ways where he gave preferential treatment to an attractive woman during a bout of electric shock therapy was one that Murray “loved”, with co-star and co-writer Harold Ramis adding that not only was the experiment rooted in real scene, it was a tester to see if audiences would relate to and embrace a hero who was proven to be less than scrupulous right off the bat.

Of course, Murray’s Venkman quickly became the de facto frontman of the Ghostbusters and their most captivating personality, so conducting unfair experimentation in his very first moments on-screen didn’t do a thing to dampen his popularity.