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Female-led ‘Ghostbusters’ secrets revealed

Melissa McCarthy, left, Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig and

Melissa McCarthy, left, Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig and Leslie Jones are the new "Ghostbusters." Credit: Sony / Hopper Stone

After an initial period of secrecy, information about Paul Feig’s female-led version of “Ghostbusters” began to trickle out of Sony studios. Ahead of the film’s much-awaited release Friday, July 15, here’s what we know so far:

THE CAST ALMOST INCLUDED EMMA STONE. The actress told The Wall Street Journal she turned down a role in the film because “It just didn’t feel like the right time for me. A franchise is a big commitment — it’s a whole thing.” In January 2015, Feig tweeted a picture of the film’s four stars: Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones.

IT’S NOT A SEQUEL. It’s a reboot, in Hollywood parlance, like the recent “Spider-Man” movies or the latest “James Bond” installments. Judging by trailers, this new “Ghostbusters” wipes the story slate clean and starts afresh with four new characters. So how come their car looks so similar to the 1980s version (and is also named the Ecto-1)? We don’t yet have the answer.

THERE WILL BE GADGETS. A behind-the-scenes featurette offers glimpses of the movie’s technology, which includes anti-paranormal grenades and shotguns, along with something called a “ghost chipper.” We’ll also see a version of the famous proton pack — a particle accelerator that can be strapped to one’s back.

THE BACKLASH HAS BEEN FIERCE. Advance publicity around the film helped pump up a level of excitement almost worthy of the new “Star Wars.” Then the trailer arrived in March and it became the most disliked trailer in YouTube history — and one of the top 25 most disliked videos, period. Why? Sacred-cow syndrome is surely one reason, but so is sexism. In an interview with Variety, Feig called the YouTube comments “vile” and “misogynistic.”

IT’LL PROBABLY BE A HIT. Despite the haters, “Ghostbusters” is expected to earn $63 million on its opening weekend, according to That’s not a blockbuster number, but if the film eventually grosses $178 million as predicted, you can look forward to a sequel.

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