SLIME AND SLIME AGAIN
PREPARE TO MEET SLIMER 2.0
“If I saw a Ghostbusters reboot, there are a bunch of things I’d be really bummed about if they didn’t show up,” says Paul Feig. “So we’ve put them in, but we’ve given them our own spin.” Hence the new Ecto-1: not the famous Miller Meteor 1959 Cadillac, but a ’93 Caddy Fleetwood hearse. The proton packs are jazzed up (check out that psychokinetic energy sink!). The jumpsuits now have hot-orange piping. And most excitingly of all, cinema’s greediest ghost is now even uglier.
“We have six effects houses working on the movie, and the thing all of them wanted to do was Slimer,” says VFX supervisor Peter Travers. In the end the coveted job went to Sony Pictures Imageworks and MPC. “When we started research we realised that he’s amorphous — even within the first movie there are multiple puppets that look radically different — which gave us free rein to make him a little grosser. We’ve added random bits of hair in weird places, like he’s an old person. And we’ve added a bunch of goopy slime to him, just pouring off his arms. I mean, he is called Slimer.”
Originally inspired by John Belushi, for the first two films the toothy, gibbering, potato-shaped blob was achieved largely with puppets. The new movie combines old technology (a fully articulated Slimer was built and operated by Ghostbusters veteran Rick Lazzarini) with new (CG augmentation) to create the most disgusting and deranged version yet.
“The guy is a loose cannon,” says Travers. “I think that’s where we’ve pushed the performance: he’s just not mentally there, he’s crazy, he’s completely unpredictable. You can stuff five emotions into a twosecond shot.”