Celebrating 35 years since Ivan Reitman’s cult favourite Ghostbusters manifested on the big screen, CLEANIN’ UP THE TOWN: Remembering Ghostbusters is heading for your home. Directed and produced by the brother and sister team of Anthony and Claire Bueno, the film pays a fitting tribute to the whole creative team behind the global phenomenon that continues to enchant audiences to this day and we were lucky enough to talk to the duo that made it.
Firstly I would like to say I loved your documentary and thought it was the perfect companion to a film I have loved since I was a kid while also giving me a whole new appreciation of the movie.
Thank you so much for your kind words. So thrilled that you love the doc, we can’t be happier with the reception that the film is receiving and people are just getting how much love has poured into making it.
What are your earliest memories of Ghostbusters?
Claire: My earliest memory was going to see it at the cinema, it was the first time my parents allowed me to go with my friends unaccompanied by an adult, I remember being really scared by the Library Ghost; it set the film up perfectly!
Anthony: My earliest memories were of lots of people talking about it, either Claire or friends at school, my Dad took me to see it and after that I was obsessed because I loved it.
How did Cleanin’ Up The Town come about?
Ghostbusters is Anthony’s favourite film of all time. Having been involved with another retrospective documentary and having loved the process of making it, it became a natural decision to want to make a definitive documentary about Ghostbusters detailing the nuts and bolts of the film as this had never been done before.
The documentary is a result of twelve years of research and production. What were some of the biggest challenges in making a movie about such a famous and well-loved film?
The biggest challenges were financial and also the distance. We are based in the UK and therefore it became logistically difficult because we were the other side of the world. We were literally working, saving the money and then flying over to continue production. Also locking Dan Aykroyd down to a date was tricky, it took us four years because he was always travelling and we were never in the same part of the US at the same time. We were so relieved when we locked that interview!
You got to talk to legends like Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Sigourney Weaver and Ivan Reitman, did they enjoy reminiscing?
Yes, it was a dream come true that all of our interviewees spared the time to speak to us. The one recurring theme that came from all of the interviews was that everyone enjoyed working on the film and they are all incredibly proud to be a part of it. Ghostbusters launched so many carriers globally.
One Ghostbuster is sadly absent from the documentary, the illusive Bill Murray, why is that?
We have an online film magazine called Premiere Scene, we interview filmmakers on the red carpet and have spoken to Bill Murray directly about being interviewed on camera when he has been in the UK promoting a movie and he agreed to do it. We sadly have never been able to secure an interview date, we never gave up trying, but it just never happened.
Cleanin’ Up The Town contains some amazing never before seen archive material, how did you get your hands on this and what was the biggest find?
We have to thank our archive producer and motion graphics editor Derek Osborn, not only is he a collector himself, but he has access to many other collectors who were gracious enough to share their material with us. Not forgetting our interviewees who trusted and shared their personal archive with us.
Our biggest find?!! The Dana auditions!
You have some great animated sequences in the film, what was the inspiration for these?
A lot of the effects guys in Ghostbusters had come off the back of working on Heavy Metal, so we wanted to pay tribute to them and that particular style of animation to assist us visually capture the genesis of the film. Ollie Jones of Better Feeling Films did a tremendous job re-creating the look and feel we desired.
As the doc evolves we adapted the style of animation to represent The Real Ghostbusters, the illustrations created by James Shepherd then animated by Derek Osborn which we hope not only pays that extra bit of fan service but also helps to illustrate and enhance the story.
Anthony you had the mammoth task of editing Cleanin’ Up The Town, how do you form a narrative from what is essentially a bunch of talking heads?
During the interview the questions are asked in such a way that you hope to get what you want from their responses. When it came to the edit, it was a case of repeatedly going through the interviews finding common themes and correlating stories. It’s a time consuming process, but I hope one that works because I then become so familiar with it, it becomes second nature piecing them all together. Once you have that rough assembly it’s then a case of pairing it down. Derek whilst working on the motion graphics would also refine the edit, by our collaborating we were able to find fluidity and pace.
Claire I read that you have interviewed many A-list movie stars including George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, Dame Helen Mirren and Tom Hardy. Who was your favourite and why?
What can I say, looney for Clooney, LOL. I have always admired him as a filmmaker, and feel there integrity to his work. As an interviewee he’s the consummate professional and understands the media circus. He has a way of instantly disarming you and making you feel at ease. I media coach, and he is someone I always recommend to watch to pick up tips for interview techniques. In fact I may need to revisit them and learn for myself now?!!
As a brother and sister team do you ever fall out working on films together?
Simply put yes we do, we’re siblings at the end of the day. The great thing about our relationship though is that we complement each other’s strengths and weaknesses. With a project that we both care so deeply about and with the financial strain we have been under, there really have been tough times between us both and our relationship has severely been put to the test. However, we had a commitment to finishing the film and you plough on and reconcile. We are incredibly lucky that we are very close and after weathering the storm, we laugh it off and get on the job.
What are some of your favourite horror films, aside from Ghostbusters of course?
We have so many! But here are a few of our favourites, An American Werewolf in London, Interview with the Vampire, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, The Lost Boys and not forgetting Carry on Screaming!
Do you believe in real life ghosts?
Yes we do, we’ve attended Ghost hunts and been the amateur Ghostbusters, but we have never seen one ourselves, at least we don’t think so. Though it feels at times the documentary has been a testament to unseen forces pushing us through the finishing line!
I see Too Hot to Handle: Remembering Ghostbusters II is in post-production, did you make it at the same time as Cleanin’ Up The Town and can you tell us more about it?
The original concept of CLEANIN’ UP THE TOWN: Remembering Ghostbusters was to cover both films, but over the course of time it felt right to dedicate a documentary to each film as both we have found has its distinct fan base.
We have about 45 interviews and an assembly edit made, Derek is working on the motion graphics presently. We do have a couple more interviews that we would love to get, not omitting the elusive Mr. Murray, but Too Hot To Handle: Remembering Ghostbusters II is taking shape rather nicely.
What else is next for you both?
After a holiday, then Too Hot To Handle: Remembering Ghostbusters II is our priority.
Find out more on:
Twitter: @Ghostbustersdoc #GhostbustersDoc
Read our review HERE and check out the trailer below: