The director of the Ghostbusters reboot, Paul Feig, knows that the film wasn’t as successful as it could have been – and he thinks he knows why.

When the film was first announced, it was praised by some for its gender-swapping of the main roles, however a very vocal minority of fans of the original two movies were outraged over the reboot – so much so that they launched a campaign to make the first trailer the most disliked in YouTube history.

The Ghostbusters reboot starred Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones and Chris Hemsworth, and though it received mixed reviews from critics, it was still chastised by many, grossing only $229.1 million worldwide, against an estimated production budget of $144 million. This was not enough to justify a sequel, much to Feig’s disappointment.

After around a year since the film’s release, the director has finally spoken about his 2016 film at Vulture Festival in LA. He expressed his disappointment that Ghostbusters was not as successful as he had hoped it would be, as well as the fact the movie was turned into a ‘cause’ by many, when he merely wanted to make a fun, enjoyable film for audiences.

Feig’s quoted as saying: “I think it kind of hampered us a little bit because the movie became so much of a cause. I think for some of our audience, they were like, ‘What the f***? We don’t wanna go to a cause. We just wanna watch a f***in’ movie.’ It was a great regret in my life that the movie didn’t do better, ’cause I really loved it. It’s not a perfect movie. None of my movies are perfect. I liked what we were doing with it. It was only supposed to be there to entertain people.”

Ghostbusters became the unwitting poster-child of a new trend of remaking classic films will all-female, or female-led casts. And although the film didn’t kickstart the trend, it certainly paved the way towards studios pursuing more female-led remakes. Feig’s reaction may come from the thoughts of many who found themselves questioning the motive of female-led remakes, with some choosing to see it as the movie industry moving forward, and others wondering whether it was simply pandering to audiences and wanting to capitalise on an already-established fanbase.

At the moment, Sony has no plans to pursue a sequel to Feig’s film, however this doesn’t necessarily mean that this is the end for Ghostbusters. The studio, as well as co-creator Dan Aykroyd, are looking into possible ways to adapt the story for animation, a live-action Netflix series, or another big screen venture.

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