Harold Ramis, screenwriter and director, died February 24 from complications of autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis. He was 69.
Ramis wrote four of the American Film Institute’s 100 Funniest Movies: Ghostbusters (1984) at #28, Groundhog Day (1993) at #34, Animal House (1978) at #36 and Caddyshack (1980) at #71.
He acted in 19 movies, his best known role being that of Dr. Egon Spengler in Ghostbusters and its sequel. He also directed 11 feature films.
Several of his most memorable projects featured actor Bill Murray. However Ramis said in an interview that his working relationship with actor Bill Murray ended while they were filming Groundhog Day, which Ramis wrote and directed. They had differing views on what the film should be about — Murray wanted it to be more philosophical, Ramis wanted it to be a comedy.
Oh dear… the next ghost that gets busted may be Harold Ramis!
So much for Ghostbusters III, for which Mr. Ramis was, I have read, the prime mover.
I think Groundhog Day is one of the greatest sf/fantasy films ever made.
He was a 1966 graduate of Washington University in St. Louis (the “Harvard of the Midwest”) — some of the situations in Animal House were allegedly based on exaggerations of incidents from his life there on Fraternity Row.
You can think of GROUNDHOG DAY as a bit of philosphical fable, even if it is a comody. A lot of philospohy needs to be laughed at too. Some you can laugh with. Got to know which is which if you study the stuff.