We Carved Pumpkins And Talked "Ghostbusters" With Director Paul Feig
When it was announced in early 2015 that Bridesmaids director Paul Feig had signed on to write, produce, and direct a female-led reboot of '80s classic Ghostbusters – along with stars Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy – it got the entire world talking. And that's an understatement.
The film is a hilarious, heartwarming story of female friendship with a healthy dose of ass-kicking, made possible by the four women leads: Starring alongside Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy are Saturday Night Live cast members Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones in their first major movie roles. So when BuzzFeed met up with Paul Feig to celebrate the movie's digital release, it was only natural that our main topic of conversation would be the women who made it just so kick-ass.
Oh, while we carved pumpkins. Because why not?
Who’s most likely to laugh during a take?
Paul Feig: We have such a funny set, and everybody laughs a lot. I think Kristen [Wiig] is probably the most susceptible to falling apart.
Who’s most likely to make someone else laugh?
PF: Everyone’s so funny on our set that it’s kind of hard to say who makes the other people laugh the most. Melissa [McCarthy]’s always hilarious. She comes up with stuff you don’t expect. Kate [McKinnon] comes up with the strangest things you’d ever…not think of, that’s the thing. She’ll say something and you’ll go, “I don’t even know how your brain works or where it came from, because I would never have thought of that joke.”
I’d say it’s a draw. I’d say all four of the ladies can make everybody else laugh.
Who’s most likely to nail a take the first time?
PF: My actors are all so good – and I call them my actors [laughs] – that they nail it pretty hardcore whenever they do something. Melissa’s kind of a machine, I have to say. She’s a solid performer who can just hit it out of the ball park every time. But then, you know Kristen Wiig, she’s a real pro.
Kate and Leslie [Jones] are awesome too – they had never done a movie this size before, but they just figured it out pretty easily. So, I don’t know. I’m just going to equivocate on all these questions, because there are so many people who are so good in this movie.
Who’s most likely to burst into song on set?
PF: Kristen and Melissa have always had this very funny relationship in which they try to make each other laugh – or do make each other laugh – by singing to each other, and singing funny voices and doing funny songs. They’re constantly breaking into song. So Kristen and Melissa are a tie for that honour.
Who’s most likely to be found at craft services?
PF: [laughs] Me! Because I love to snack.
Who’s most likely to improvise a perfect line?
PF: Oh gosh, when you have these four amazing women, they are all so good at improvising that I don’t know who to give that honour to. Each one of them is so inventive and so unexpected in what they come up with.
Kate improvises very strange things that you wouldn’t expect, so you’re constantly going, “Where did that come from?” Kristen and Melissa are just gods of improv, so they just constantly surprise you with how they make you laugh, but still in a very real way. It doesn’t feel like they’re going for a joke, they’re just being funny as the character, and that takes a skill. Then Leslie Jones is just a force of nature, who will blurt out something that makes you rock back on your heels and say, “That’s hilarious.”
Who’s most likely to do a perfect impression of another cast member?
PF: They’re all such good mimics, but I have to say, I find Kristen to be especially adept at being able to imitate people. Obviously Kate McKinnon does all these amazing characters, as does Melissa, but Kristen is always able to surprise us and make us laugh. Although, Leslie Jones likes to imitate people on the crew [laughs] and it’s always very funny.
Who’s most like their character?
PF: Kate McKinnon. We wrote this character to be somebody who knows electronics, and engineering, and nuclear physics, and all that stuff, and Kate gets on set and she starts stripping wires. It turns out she’s into science and she’s very much into electronics and builds things and takes them apart and knows everything about them. So I think Kate is pretty Holtzmann-like.
Who’s most likely to brighten your day?
PF: Aww. My wife! Come on, how else am I going to answer that question?
No, everybody’s so much fun. When you work on a comedy, and you hire the funniest people you know and they come from an improv background, they’re all used to being a team. So you don’t get divas, and you don’t get people who don’t want other people to be funny. Everyone wants the people around them to be as funny as they can, because then they get to be funny too, and everything is as it should be.
So… What was the question? Who brightens my day? They all do.