Recent movies such as The Irishman have demonstrated how CGI can be employed to alter the actors’ facial features. What if that same technology provided a low-cost means of updating classic films? Rather than recast roles, the special effects team would need only alter appearances and re-record the soundtrack. Consider the following example. A coronavirus era re-release of the Harold Ramis hit Ghostbusters. In this excerpt, the Virusbusters try to convince Donald Trump to take the pandemic seriously.
AN AIDE (Tommy Hollis)
(entering with the Virusbusters)
The Virusbusters are here, Mr. President.
DONALD TRUMP (David Marguiles)
(looking them over)
Okay, the Virusbusters. And where’s Jared?
JARED (William Atherton)
(Jared shoulders his way forward.)
Here I am, sir. And I’m prepared to make a full report. These men are complete hoaxsters. Someone has a fever or a slight cough and calls these bozos, who conveniently show up to get rid of the problem by suggesting they get tested, isolate themselves and wear masks.
You’d think they’d recommend Hydroxychloroquine or Clorox.
Dr. Fauci (Bill Murray)
I know he’s your son-in-law, but that man is a psychopath, Mr. President.
Or a mixture of gases, no doubt the army has a surplus.
(Trump looks for help from his advisors.)
HHS SECRETARY AZAR (Norman Matlock)
All I know is, this isn’t your typical seasonal flu reality show. I’ve seen every form of contagion known to man, but this beats me.
(Trump turns to Franklin Graham.)
GRAHAM (Tom McDermott)
Officially, the Church will not take a position on the religious implications of this phenomena. However, since it started, people have been lining up at every church in the city. We’ve had to put out additional collection plates. Personally, I think it’s a sign from God but don’t quote me on that.
(shaking his head)
I can’t call a press conference and tell everyone to just start praying. I’d have to go to church to set an example.
(Ben Carson steps forward. Trump looks at him quizzically.)
CARSON (Ernie Hudson)
Mr. President, you may not remember me. I’m Ben Carson, your secretary of HUD. I’m not usually welcome in the oval office, but I had to come and tell you – this thing is real. Since I joined the task force, I have seen shit that would turn you white.
(He rubs his eyes wearily.)
So what do I do now?
Mr. President, it’s a pretty simple choice. You can believe Jared here … or you can accept the fact that this country is heading for a disaster of really Biblical proportions.
What do you mean “Biblical?”
Old Testament, Mr. President. “Wrath of God”-type stuff. The beaches will close, people won’t be able to get a haircut or their nails done …
BIRX (Dan Akroyd)
… no political rallies, no golf, mass unemployment, inspectors general sacrificed …
Enough! I get the point. But what if you’re wrong?
If I’m wrong then nothing happens and you toss us in the can like you want to do with Biden and Obama. But if I’m right, and if we can stop this thing … well, let’s just say that you could save the lives of a lot of registered voters.
VIRUSBUSTERS! Not coming to a theater near you this spring.
For what it’s worth.