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“Ghostbusters Was An Emotional Experience For Jason and Me”: Ivan Reitman

By: Andrea Mora

During the 19th edition of the Morelia International Film Festival (FICM), Jason Reitman offered a master class at Cinépolis Centro, in which his father, the also filmmaker Ivan Reitman, participated virtually.

Jason Reitman arrived at room four of Cinépolis to a theater packed to the brim by an audience eager to see the directors, with some fans dressed up as Ghostbusters. The young director reiterated his gratitude and how happy he is to have his film released at Morelia on the Day of the Dead.

Master Class with Jason Reitman

Ghostbusters is a movie about family,” Jason declared, and therefore it is also dedicated to the whole family. “My father and I made a movie for everyone.” Jason knows that everything about the movie revolves around family ties. Family is not only the subject of his film, it was also part of how it was shot. While filming, his father Ivan Reitman was not only the producer but also a central point of support during his process as a director. Ivan visited the set every day and offered input to his son.

From Los Angeles, Ivan Reitman pointed out how incredible it was to participate in the project with his son, who accepted his comments and suggestions: “Working together was an emotional experience for both of us,” he said. He also knows that Ghostbusters stopped being his movie long ago, as it is clear to him that the film belongs to the audience.

Master Class with Jason Reitman and Ivan Reitman

As a director, Jason Reitman believes that the cast is one of the most important parts of the shoot, and one of the many successes he had in Ghostbusters had to do with the actors he worked with. For him, a large part of the film is due to the improvisation carried out by the actors; many of the most iconic scenes in the film were not written by him, they were the actors’ ideas, specifically Paul Rudd: “Paul Rudd is one of the funniest people in the world, he is so good that he makes us look like better directors,” he confessed. In addition to Paul Rudd, the film also features Annie Potts, Finn Wolfhard, and many other actors whom he describes as “brilliant and incredible.”

In addition to some reflections on their filmography, both directors reiterated their love of movies and how making films has brought them together as a family. Jason Reitman even commented that his best childhood memories are with his father while editing movies. He also admits between jokes that he surely had the luckiest childhood in the world as he grew up between movie sets and actors; therefore, this movie is also his father’s legacy.

To Reitman, it’s clear that “a film is a mirror”, each person sees in their films what they believe in. His cinema tries to show how complex human relationships are and that people don’t fit into “good” and “bad”.