I had an interview with Drew Pearce today for his work on the screenplay to Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. We had a great chat about gritty, pummeled action heroes and creating originals as well as continuing franchises. Pearce also wrote the first draft of a Ghostbusters spinoff that will follow the Paul Feig directed reboot. The idea is that there will be a shared universe of multiple Ghosbuster films, but I asked Pearce if one restriction was that, since Feig chose to reboot the series, Pearce’s film could not claim to exist in a world that also included the Venkman/Stantz/Spengler/Zeddmore office. I was encouraged by the way Pearce left the connections open ended.

“It’s interesting, my idea may allow them the ability to connect everything,” Pearce said. “It’s kind of a choice above my pay grade but on a level of imagination and creativity, I would love to see a world where all of the things were a shared universe. It’s just more attractive for a massive fan of Ghostbusters like me.”

Like Rogue Nation, for which Christopher McQuarrie gets screenplay credit and all the personal credit from Pearce as you’ll read in our full interview, Pearce has left Ghostbusters in the hands of Joe and Anthony Russo, Channing Tatum and their team.

“I’m further away,” Pearce said. “It wasn’t like when I do my Marvel stuff where I’m right there at the nexus with Kevin [Feige] and the gang. The Ghostbusters one is bigger and there’s a lot more elements in play. Every movie’s different. It’s one where I came in, went ‘Here is my idea. Here is how I would extrapolate it. You guys go crazy and see where you go with it’ which was a bit like [Mission: Impossible]. My work on Ghostbusters is done. I’ve handed over a story bible.”

Pearce did clarify that early reports that called it a male version of Ghostbusters were premature. “And gross,” Pearce added. “That’s what’s kind of vaguely appalling, is the idea of going, ‘Have to have a male one.’ It wasn’t like that at all. It was much more organic just  from conversation between me and the Russo brothers who are producing it and Channing and his people originally.”

What Pearce has moved onto is an original screenplay he will also direct called The Long Run. “It’s a contemporary movie but I’m desperate for the kind of gritty entertainment of the late ‘60s. Most obviously The Dirty Dozen but also if you watch Point Blank or something like that now. They’re really hard but they’re also funny. They’re engaging and entertaining and dynamic but they’re about something. They’re about real character and real theme so that is what I’m trying to do with The Long Run.”

We’ll bring you the full interview with Drew Pearce with everything about Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation next week, and my review of the film posts tomorrow.

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