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Harold Ramis’s daughter wants Ghostbusters haters to stop using her father as an excuse

Ramis as Egon (R).
Ramis as Egon (R).
Alex Abad-Santos is a senior correspondent who explains what society obsesses over, from Marvel and movies to fitness and skin care. He came to Vox in 2014. Prior to that, he worked at the Atlantic.

The new Ghostbusters — despite the wishes of some very angry (and mostly male) people — is now in theaters. Since the film’s infancy, it’s been marred by an irrational backlash, with some haters looking for any and every reason to denounce it without admitting what was fueling their endless, napalm-like rage: sexism in response to it starring four women in the titular ghostbusting roles.

In a new essay published at Splitsider, Violet Ramis Stiel writes about her late father, Harold Ramis, the actor who played Egon Spengler in the original 1984 Ghostbusters film. Haters have claimed that the new film spits in the face of the original and disrespects the spirit of the film and the writers, actors, and filmmakers involved with the project. Ramis Stiel wants to make it clear that if her father were still alive today, he would have supported the reboot, just like his Ghostbusters co-stars (who all have cameos in the new film). She explains:

In his personal life, Harold Ramis was a kind, generous, and gracious person. Professionally, he was always about sharing the spotlight and making the other guy look good. Please, stop using my dad as an excuse to hate the new Ghostbusters. It degrades his memory to spew bile in his name.

According to Ramis Stiel, in the years before her father’s death he worked on various Ghostbusters scripts, threw around myriad ideas for how the franchise could continue, and was open to making a new, inventive interpretation for a new generation of fans. Using him as an avatar to choke off the possibility of opening the Ghostbusters world to new fans isn’t something Ramis would have stood for.

"Let’s give my nine-year-old daughter a chance to put on a proton pack and feel like a badass," Violet writes. "In the spirit of my dad and his love for movies and comedy above all, I’ll be there for Ghostbusters 2016 opening weekend with my kids, eating popcorn, wearing my Egon Spengler tribute pin, cheering on the new crew, and laughing loudly, from the heart."

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