Just One More Ghost Post: Where Do Great Creative Ideas Come Form?

So, Ghostbusters…great idea, right?You have a team of mortal humans, hunting ghosts with technology in a modern setting- genius! I mean, Aykroyd and Ramis did write a great script and obviously put a lot of work into getting the thing to work on the big screen. The movie was a smash success, inspiring two sequels, two cartoon

You have a team of mortal humans, hunting ghosts, with technology, in a modern setting- genius! I mean, Aykroyd and Ramis did write a great script and obviously put a lot of work into getting the whole thing to work on the big screen. The movie was a smash success and inspired one sequel, two cartoon shows, and a reboot (see last post). But where did they get the initial idea for the ghostbusters?

Well, simply put, they got it from the Ghost Busters.

Old TV Ghost Busters

Back in 1974, the creative crew at Filmways came up with the idea for a Saturday morning, live-action, TV show about a team of mortal humans, hunting ghosts with technology in a modern setting. Only fifteen episodes were made on a budget not quite big enough to keep the lights on in my house for a year.quite frankly, it was crap.

And, quite frankly, it was crap.

Not that I knew it at the time (I was eight years old). Heck, I clearly remember running around my back yard with an old broken camera, zapping my brother out of existence as he came around the house with a sheet over his head. So, as a kid, I liked it. But to watch the Ghost Busters TV show as an adult was to put my head in a cheese grader…it’s THAT bad.

Ghost Busters B

The acting is terrible, the production design is abysmal and the writing is unforgivable. Apparently, all fifteen episodes were taped in just nine weeks and it shows.

But was it a good idea?

Well, obviously YES! It was so good in fact, that after Aykroyd and Ramis knocked out their script, Columbia Pictures went to Filmways with a wad of cash to buy the licence. So, if good things do in fact grow in questionable ground, where does that lead us?

Today, I know quite a few writers who are always on the lookout for inspiration. They have the talent, and they have the skill to be great authors. Yet they struggle to come up with a good idea for a story. My advice? Go digging in the trash! Look for the gems of goodness in otherwise bad movies, TV shows, or books. Take a stale idea and make it fresh, and more importantly, make it your own. After all, it worked out okay for Aykroyd and Ramis.

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One thought on “Just One More Ghost Post: Where Do Great Creative Ideas Come Form?”

  1. I cannot recall how many times I’ve seen a show, read a book, watched an anime or movie, and thought… I could totally do that better, or that’s a great idea it just needs… this, this, and that. That’s one of the reasons that Fan Fiction exists in the first place, right?

    However, taking a premise and making it your own and giving it a new spin. That’s what making use of inspiration is really about. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

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