Monday, June 8, 2015

Rare Treats: Just how did the Real Ghostbusters get on the air? (1986)

In 1986, DIC (now part of Cookie Jar) was granted a license to produce an animated version of the 1984 hit, "Ghostbusters". Since Filmation was mounting an animated followup to their 1975 series, some amendments had to be made, particularly in the title, hence The Real Ghostbusters, which ultimately outlasted Filmation's entry, as it managed 5 seasons between ABC & syndication (1986-91).

Following is a promo video produced by DIC, portions of which you'll recognize from the show open. Studio singer John Smith recorded a cover of Ray Parker, Jr.'s iconic theme song.

Now we have to figure out how Slimer was freed and became the team mascot.......


magicdog said...

I remember hearing of the Ghostbuster name dispute - but I didn't care. I watched both shows and truth be told, the DIC version as better at storytelling and we always weren't stuck with some half assed oral at the end. Although I did find the Filmation version interesting.

I remember Dan Ackroyd mentioned in an interview about how mildly annoyed he was that his animated expy was a pudgy little guy with Fred Jones' voice! Ackroyd wasn't pudgy at the time, so I can understand why he was miffed since the other characters looked much closer to their real life counterparts.

hobbyfan said...

Ah, yes. Frank Welker was cast as Ray. Since the producers couldn't use Aykroyd's likeness, they probably went with Welker's, since he was shown to be a bit stout in his appearance on the Dean Martin Roast a few years earlier. Real Ghostbusters, as you can see, had boss animation, better than Filmation.

Silverstar said...

DiC called their series "The Real Ghostbusters" to distinguish their version from Filmation's (Filmation's Lou Scheimer had retained the 'Ghost Busters' name but nothing else GB related, which he later admitted was a mistake on his part, as both studios had planned to make a cartoon series based on the hit movie, so Scheimer had to make his animated series an update of Filmation's live-action SatAM series starring Larry Storch and Forrest Tucker), which is kind of a punch to the gut to Filmation, as the Filmation version of Ghost Busters preceded the Columbia Pictures movie by 9 years, so technically Filmation's squad were the 'real' Ghost Busters.

The 'Real' in DiC was also a reference to how their series supposedly chronicled the 'real life' adventures of the team that the 1984 movie was based on, as evidenced by an episode in which the guys are invited to attend the premiere of their own movie. After watching Bill Murray in action in one scene, Peter complains that Murray sounds nothing like him.

hobbyfan said...

Which season was that movie ep in? Of course, Lorenzo Music (season 1) and Dave Coulier (seasons 2-5) sounded nothing like Murray, hence the in-joke.

Filmation's series was, yes, a sequel to the 1975 series, but since the live-action series hadn't been seen since its cancellation, viewers lost the connection.