Fresh off the box office success of “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” Sony Pictures Entertainment has signed an overall producing deal with Jason Reitman and Gil Kenan, the team behind the paranormal reboot.
The movie has grossed $115.8 million globally since it opened two weeks ago and helped find a fresh way into a franchise that first launched in 1984. A previous attempt to revive the series in 2016, which found Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones donning proton packs, failed to turn a profit because it cost $144 million to produce. “Afterlife” was made more economically, carrying a $75 million budget.
“Jason is the thing you dream about: a world-class, signature storyteller, visionary filmmaker, and dream producing partner,” said Sanford Panitch, president of Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group. “Jason and Gil as co-writing partners have a remarkable understanding of commercial quality cinema, and we are thrilled about the upcoming pipeline from these guys.”
“We’re excited to have evolved our storytelling partnership into a full-fledged production company and couldn’t be more proud to have a home at Sony Pictures, the studio most committed to the theatrical movie going experience,” said Reitman and Kenan.
Reitman earned Oscars nominations for directing “Juno” and “Up in the Air,” and also made “Thank You for Smoking,” “Young Adult” and “Tully.” He previously worked with Sony on the political drama “The Front Runner.” Most of those movies were on a smaller scale than “Afterlife,” but Reitman has a personal connection to the material. His father, Ivan Reitman, directed the original “Ghostbusters” and 1989’s “Ghostbusters II.”
Kenan has directed films such as “Monster House,” another Sony release, as well as “City of Ember,” “Poltergeist,” and the recently released “A Boy Called Christmas,” which stars Kristen Wiig, Maggie Smith, and Jim Broadbent.
Kenan and Reitman penned “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” which Reitman directed. Reitman is repped by WME and Alan Wertheimer. Kenan is repped by WME and Robert Offer.