On the same day that the new Ghostbusters movie opens up in theaters, Ghostheads will be streaming instantly on Netflix come July 15, 2016. The documentary, directed by Brendan Mertens, previously premiered as a Work in Progress at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival in April.
The documentary takes a look at the impact of the franchise on fans over the last three decades. Key cast and crew members such as Dan Aykroyd, Ivan Reitman, Ernie Hudson, and Paul Feig were among those interviewed. The fan community across the globe also has their story presented, whether it's New Jersey's own Tom Gebhardt or Peter Mosen, the "Original Ghostbusters Fan."
Mertens, a Canadian filmmaker, spoke passionately about Ghostbusters fans, better known as Ghostheads.
"Ghostheads are friendly people - there's not really any animosity like in other fandoms we've seen," Mertens said. "They really use their powers for good - raising money for their local communities, providing a place for people who may otherwise feel alone, and visiting children's hospitals in full gear, brightening the days of every child they meet."
Producers Tommy Avallone (I am Santa Claus) and Lee Leshen (Back in Time), had some similar comments.
"The Ghostheads are great how they find their own identity in the Ghostbuster universe and build a community, talking with fans from all over the world."
"This franchise has touched so many lives," Leshen says. "When we visited various comic cons, we'd run into Ghostheads around every corner, all of whom had their own flight suits, and many had built their own proton packs. The dedication these fans have is evidenced, not only through their uniforms, but also, through their positive attitude. They truly believe in the franchise's messaging of friendship, teamwork, and doing good for the common man."
When Avallone and Leshen hosted a panel at C2E2 in Chicago this past March, they were met by Ghostbusters from some four states, if not more.
Production on the documentary took a year and the film was recently completed. Financing came from the likes of both Indiegogo and Kickstarter. It doesn't just include interviews but footage from fans that sent their own stories in from all over the globe. They couldn't make room for all the fan-submitted footage or it would be well over six hours long!
Adam F. Goldberg (ABC's The Goldbergs) co-produced the documentary, as did Derrick Kunzer, who also serves as the film's director of photography, and Raymond Esposito and Kevin Sisti Jr. executive produced.
"We'd love people to go and see the reboot, and then, kick back with a nice frosty Ecto-Cooler and watch our movie at home so they can see how the film has impacted the lives of so many," Leshen says of the upcoming release on Netflix. "Who knows? Maybe we'll help some people find their own inner Ghosthead!"