Paul Feig Opens Up About Casting 'Ghostbusters'

by Anna Klassen

The announcement of an all-female Ghostbusters reboot was a pure triumph for the film industry: Here's two genres — action and comedy — almost entirely dominated by men, that will be torn down the middle and resewn with a feminist flare. But apparently, not everyone was pleased to see a ladies only reboot, and a second iteration featuring an all-male cast is now slated from Sony, the same studio delivering Paul Feig's version. The Spy director, whose own iteration is slated to come out in 2016, isn't pleased. "Look at the backlash to what I'm trying to do with Ghostbusters," he says. "It's bananas. What time is it? Oh right, it's 2015. Is this still going on? Really?"

The director, who's known for elevating the work of talented female actresses in his projects, is teaming up with Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones to bring Ghostbusters back to the big screen. "It shouldn't be these women's movies and these men's movies, it should be all mixed up," Feig says. "Which is why people are like, 'Well you should mix Ghostbusters,' But I have too many funny women I want to put in there. I don't want to take a job away from them. It's a cause, but it's a selfish cause because I just know too many funny women."

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While he only cast four ladies, Feig expresses the pure heartache it was to cast Ghostbusters (thanks to an excess of funny female friends). "Coming up with the four women for Ghostbusters was the hardest thing in the world," he says. "It was literally four months of me doing different combinations in my head because it's such a deep bench. These are the funniest women in the world," he says. "Every woman on SNL right now is a home run. Then you've got Amy and Tina, Schumer is getting her chance now, the Broad City girls. Look at Ellie Kemper and her great show... I can't even list them out."

But pulling from a pool of comedians was only half the battle. "There's also legitimate actresses I know who can be funny. Thats why I want to do as many of these [female-driven films] as possible. I just want to keep these people working, and Hollywood isn't giving them enough roles. It's slowly starting to crack open, but it's not. I just hate to see talented people not get to work. There are all these people who need these opportunities."

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But Feig, who is of course a male director, realizes the irony of his gender. "I hate that I'm a guy directing these types of movies," he says. "I wish women were directing them. I want to get women doing these so there are more of these projects and we can just lay it to rest, and make it like, 'Who's the best for the job?'"

While we twiddle our thumbs for the all-female Ghostbusters, see Paul Feig and Melissa McCarthy's latest collaboration, Spy, in theatres June 5.

Images: Getty