Paul Rudoff wrote:
The second Halloween treat is a MAJOR addition to the site and is an absolute rarity: the Ghostbusters II August 5, 1988 script draft!!! This draft is wildly different than the final film. There is no Slimer, Dana, Janosz, River of Slime, Vigo painting, or Ghost Jogger. New characters Lane Walker and Jalmar Litvinov would, in essence, become Dana and Janosz later on. Instead of the Vigo painting, the vessel of evil is a religious Icon triptych held by Jalmar. Vigo, who's Russian here, commandeers the Statue of Liberty and chases the Ghostbusters through the city streets at the film's climax. Oscar is possessed by Vigo and moves like an adult with an adult's gaze. The vehicle which we know as "Ecto-1A" is referred to as "Ecto-1". And that's just the top of the iceberg of the differences in this draft. It truly feels like an alternate universe - but without the turtles. Major thanks to Matthew Jordan for helping me clean up the scanned pages. (Side note, the Ghostbusters II 11/27/1988 draft was not ready at press time and will be uploaded at a later date.)
Some of my own observations. Spoilers aplenty:
First, it's just kind of...bad. We see some moments and bits that would make it into the final script and the actual movie, but it doesn't hang together well here. Venkman is really unlikeable. Lane is bland beyond compare.
I actually find the villain concept a bit interesting, though. The backstory is so different from the final Vigo that you could easily pull out any residual links and spin Jalmar Litvinov into a totally different villain. I won't rule out giving that a try.
There's even more of Louis than in the final product
and he's basically an official "fifth Ghostbuster" here
And I'm even more convinced that Harold Ramis must have a massive blind spot when it comes to character romance. The same guy who derided the Egon/Janine pairing as 'failed" and "mawkish" thought the sleazy Janine/Louis spectacle was better, and here gives us an even more abrupt version of the latter: after not even interacting during the entire script, she kisses him out of nowhere just before the big battle. Good grief. What's really absurd is that Louis shares most of what became their 'flirty" dialog in later script drafts with Winston
of all people. (Winston/Louis new OTP!!!!111!!! Nah, I couldn't do that to Winston
And Winston, again, even worse than in the final movie. He's there in the birthday party scene at the beginning, one bit with Louis in the middle, then completely vanishes until the final battle.
It's an interesting artifact, and I'm glad Paul and devilmanozzy for bringing it to us.