What is there left to say about “Ghostbusters” that hasn’t already been said in the three decades since the movie landed in theatres, spawned a franchise and became an instant nostalgia touchstone for people of a certain age? Perhaps it’s a good time to remind folks that for all the warm and fuzzy memories, Ernie Hudson (aka Winston) had a pretty crap time making the movie. After signing on, he saw his role in the movie significantly reduced to almost half of what was in the original script, with the longstanding rumor that Eddie Murphy originally sought the part (though Ivan Reitman long denied this) leading the studio to minimize Hudson’s role.
“Originally Winston came in at the very beginning and was very involved throughout the whole film,” Hudson said to Metro New York. “Winston was the guy who got slimed at the hotel. Winston was the guy who thought of the marshmallow man at the end.” Hudson adds: “He had a lot of backstory in the original script: He was an air force pilot, he was a demolition expert, he was a guy who took harge. That all disappeared with the rewrite.”
And as he explains, Hudson was continually pushed out of the movie at almost every opportunity, right through to the marketing. “I remember driving down Sunset Boulevard and seeing the big billboard for the first time. There were only three guys on there, and Winston wasn’t included,” he says.
And among the many things touched on in Screen Junkies’ Honest Trailer for “Ghostbusters,” one of them is how Hudson was snipped from the movie, even in Pan-And-Scan VHS tapes, where he was cropped out of the frame. What gives?
Anyway, take a nitpicking trip down memory lane below.