'Why do I want to waste one frame of film when I can entertain the audience?'

By Nicole Sperling
Updated July 19, 2016 at 04:21 PM EDT
Credit: Hopper Stone

Those who have seen the new Ghostbusters, know the film’s fun doesn’t stop once the credits begin to roll. In fact, some may argue that’s when it all begins… again. From Chris Hemsworth‘s extended dance sequence to a clever cameo featuring one of the original actors playing a very different part, Ghostbuster director Paul Feig used the end credits as a time to cram in his favorite extras that he just couldn’t fit into the movie. Plus, did he just reveal secrets to the sequel?

(Warning: Spoilers ahead)

The Ghostbusters end credits are (proton) packed full of delicious goodies. First we get an extended dance sequence featuring Hemsworth playing his dumb receptionist character, Kevin, who’s possessed by the film’s malevolent villain, Rowan. Not only does the nerdy loner get to embody Hemsworth’s impressively muscular physique, but in the very final moments he also gets to control legions of soldiers and policemen and orchestrate an elaborate dance sequence that was initially part of the big third act set piece.

According to Feig, the scene, which in the film would have only lasted for 30 seconds, slowed down the pace of the movie, and made the film’s villain appear a bit, well… villainous.

Once Feig and his editors, Melissa Bretherton and Brent White, omitted the moment from the movie, it freed them up to cut together a much longer sequence that then ran over the film’s credits and played with the font of the lengthy scroll, pushing the credits left and right in time with Hemsworth’s moves.

“I still really wanted this dance scene,” says Feig. “I’ve always wanted to end a movie with a big Hollywood-style dance scene. If you have something fun at the end of the movie, then you are sending people out in a great mood.”

But Feig wasn’t content to just entertain. He also had a few nostalgia bits to add into the credits to give an extra nod to the fans of the original Ghostbusters.

Those include the moment when Sigourney Weaver shows up on screen, not as Dana Barrett from the original but rather as scientist — and Jillian Holtzmann (Kate McKinnon) mentor — Rebecca Gorin. She and Holtzmann share a moment together, laughing about the instability of the lab set-up. “Safety lights are for dudes,” Weaver jokes. That scene was also supposed to be in the movie but, according to Feig, there were just one too many vignettes that originally made the comedy feel endless.

“It was like putting a hat on a hat,” he says. “I loved those scenes so much, and they all got big laughs so we thought why not just make it part of the end credits. The goal though is to put just enough credits so people don’t rocket out of their seats and out of the movie. There is something nice about getting people to sit back down.”

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And if there is one moment to sit back down, it’s for the final moment of the film, when the four Ghostbusters are all working away in their new fancy digs and Patty (Leslie Jones) listens to a mysterious electronic frequency. Her question: “I heard something really weird. What’s Zuul?”

Of course, fans of the original remember that Zuul is the Gatekeeper of Gozer who possesses Barrett’s character in the first film. Was this just an Easter egg to the original, or an indication that Zuul is the big bad villain behind the ghosts’ presence in the new movie and someone we will see again in a future installment in the franchise? Feig isn’t coping to either scenario.

“I don’t know, you tell me,” he said. “I can neither confirm nor deny.”

One thing is clear: with a robust $46 million opening, an eager studio looking to jumpstart a franchise, and overall positive reviews, Feig will likely be asked to return. The question is, will he answer the call?

“Melissa McCarthy said it best, when you are in the O.R. having a baby and the baby is halfway out, it’s not the time to ask if you want another baby,” he said, speaking before the final weekend numbers had been tallied. “At this point, we are just trying to get the baby out.”

Ghostbusters (2016)

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 105 minutes
  • Paul Feig