More than thirty years on, the original ‘Ghostbusters’ remains one of the best-loved comedies ever – and it also has more than a few moments which could only have been allowed in a PG-rated film in the 80s.
Perhaps the most notorious moment in the 1984 movie shows Dan Aykroyd’s Ray having a dream in which a female ghost appears above him, floats down towards his crotch, then disappears – at which point invisible hands undo his trousers, and parents everywhere cross their fingers that their kids won’t ask for an explanation.
This distinctly non-family friendly scene was merely a leftover of a longer sequence originally shot for the film which wound up on the cutting room floor, and has never been seen since. However, this might be about to change, as a copy of the deleted scene has apparently been located.
Facebook page Ghost Corps shared the above image on Thursday, noting “It’s time for another #TBT vault find! These reels came from a box in Ivan’s personal storage and we’re pretty excited to have uncovered some unreleased scenes! #Ghostbusters” (In case you’re not up on your Facebook abbreviations, TBT means Throwback Thursday.)
The key VHS tape to take note of there is the one on the right marked ‘Fort Detmerring.’ This is the sequence from which the, ahem, amorous ghost moment was taken, and the full description of the deleted scene from Ghostbusters wikia explains how it originally played out (and why Ray is wearing a strange period costume over his Ghostbuster overalls):
“Ray Stantz is in the Fort Detmerring Single Officers’ Quarters, a painstakingly restored period room with a four poster bed, writing table and wardrobe hung with uniforms. Ray tries on an officer’s uniform and models in front of a full-length mirror, striking a few heroic poses. He then tests out the bed and quickly falls asleep from exhaustion. A uniform sleeve moves slightly. A sabre in its sheath begins to tap lightly against the open doorsash. A phosphorescent light streaked out in between gaps in the clothing, casting patterns over the room. Ray’s P.K.E. Meter goes off. Stantz rolled over. From inside the attire, a pink mist rose up and took on a human form. It hovered above Ray and seems to look over Ray. Ray, still asleep, rolled onto his back.
“The mist slithered through the curtains of the bed post and slowly descended. The ghost appears to be a beautiful young woman. She is face to face with Ray then moves down past his waist. Ray wakes up and props himself up. The ghost vanished. Ray’s belt is undone and his zipper slowly opened. Ray’s confusion turns to pleasure. Meanwhile, Winston Zeddemore is walking in the corridor outside smoking a cigarette. He heard voices and went up to the door. Winston asked Ray if everything was okay. Ray quickly yells, “Later, Man!!” Winston shrugged and slunk away.”
It’s understandable why it was chosen to shorten and thereby reduce the emphasis on this adult-oriented joke in an otherwise largely family-friendly movie – but if copies of the uncut sequence exist, it is surprising that they’ve never been released, as fans will doubtless be interested to see it.
If this VHS copy is genuine, does this mean the full Fort Detmerring scene will see the light of day in the near future? Let’s wait and see.