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What the cast of Ghostbusters looks like today

In 1984, a group of rising comedy luminaries — including director Ivan Reitman, co-writers and co-stars Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, and stars Bill Murray and Rick Moranis — came together to make a movie about a group of scientists in New York City who believed they could catch ghosts for a living. With the help of fellow stars Sigourney Weaver, Ernie Hudson, and Annie Potts — along with a great supporting cast — they made a comedy classic.

Ghostbusters remains one of the funniest and most beloved films of the 1980s 35 years after its release, and it helped launch a franchise that has lived in on the form of one sequel (with another on the way), one reboot, a couple of animated series, comic books, video games, toys, and much more.

The movie was a huge hit, and its cast reaped the benefits. Some went on to become comedy megastars, others respected dramatic actors, and some iconic character actors. From the titular heroes themselves to their bureaucratic nemesis, here's what the cast of Ghostbusters looks like today.

Bill Murray - Dr. Peter Venkman

By the time Ghostbusters came along, Bill Murray had already transitioned from comedy TV stardom on Saturday Night Live to comedy movie stardom thanks to films like Meatballs, Caddyshack, and Stripes (alongside fellow future Ghostbuster Harold Ramis, who also directed Caddyshack). His instant classic performance as Dr. Peter Venkman made Murray an even bigger star, and cemented his status as a pop culture icon for generations of comedy fans.

In the 35 years since, Murray has continued to build a string of interesting credits ranging from commercial hits to critical success. He returned for Ghostbusters II in 1989, made a Christmas classic with Scrooged, re-teamed with Ramis for one of the greatest comedy films ever made (Groundhog Day), and began acclaimed collaborations with directors Sofia Coppola (Lost In Translation), Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers), and Wes Anderson (Rushmore), with whom he's now made eight films. When he's not busy crashing parties and weddings all across America, he's still acting, including a cameo in the 2016 Ghostbusters film and a classic appearance in the horror-comedy Zombieland. Among his upcoming projects is yet another collaboration with Anderson, The French Dispatch, scheduled for release in 2020.

Dan Aykroyd - Dr. Raymond Stantz

Ghostbusters began with Dan Aykroyd, who wrote the original script based on a lifelong interest in paranormal phenomena, originally for his Saturday Night Live castmate John Belushi. The script went through several revisions and ultimately was credited to both Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, but it began with Aykroyd's idea, and he's continued a close association with the franchise throughout his career. 

After his success as one of the original "Not Ready for Prime Time Players" on Saturday Night Live, Aykroyd transitioned to a successful film career with The Blues Brothers in 1980 and Trading Places in 1983, then Ghostbusters finally made it to the screen and became a blockbuster. He returned as Raymond Stantz in the sequel (which he also co-wrote), and made a cameo in the 2016 reboot. Other recent acting work has included the voice of the title character in Yogi Bear, a recurring guest star spot on According to Jim, and narrating the docuseries Dino Hunt Canada. In addition to potential future Ghostbusters projects, he's also reportedly developing a TV spinoff of The Blues Brothers.

Harold Ramis - Dr. Egon Spengler

As an onscreen performer, Harold Ramis is known more for his work as Dr. Egon Spengler in Ghostbusters than anything else, in part because the role is iconic, but also because he was simply less present in front of the camera than his costars. Ramis' breakthrough came via Canadian comedy series SCTV, where he served as head writer as well as a performer, but his big Hollywood break arrived when he co-wrote Animal House, the legendary National Lampoon film that became a blockbuster and essentially created an entire subgenre of comedy films.

In 1979 he co-wrote Meatballs, and that launched a years-long collaboration with both director Harold Ramis and star Bill Murray that would then lead to Caddyshack (his directorial debut), Stripes, and ultimately Ghostbusters, which he co-wrote with Dan Aykroyd.

After Ghostbusters, Ramis continued to establish himself as one of the most important comedy filmmakers of his generation, with writing and directing credits including Groundhog Day and Analyze This. He also helmed several episode of The Office and made on-screen appearances in As Good As It Gets, Knocked Up, and Walk Hard. His final acting role was in his final film as director, Year One. He died on February 24, 2014, at the age of 69.

Ernie Hudston - Winston Zeddemore

Winston Zeddemore is not a founding member of the Ghostbusters, which sets him apart a bit from the rest of the team. Similarly, Ernie Hudson was not a comedy superstar at the time Ghostbusters was made, which set him apart a bit from the rest of the film's stars. What Winston (and Hudson) brought to the team was a different perspective, a sense of dependability, and an undeniable presence, something Hudson has continued to bring tirelessly to his more than 200 screen credits.

After years of work that included numerous guest spots on TV series, Ghostbusters brought more exposure to Hudson, which led to bigger roles. He returned for Ghostbusters II in 1989, but in between came major roles on St. Elsewhere and The Last Precinct. The '90s brought more major TV roles, including the miniseries Broken Badges and Wild Palms and the HBO series Oz, and a supporting role in the cult classic film The Crow. More recently, Hudson's prolific acting has led to roles in Twin Peaks: The Return, Grace and Frankie, and the upcoming L.A.'s Finest. He also made a cameo appearance in the 2016 Ghostbusters reboot.

Sigourney Weaver - Dana Barrett

Sigourney Weaver was already a star by the time Ghostbusters happened thanks to the massive success of Alien five years earlier, but she had not yet established herself as a major comedy star. Ghostbusters proved her versatility and broadened her stardom, and more memorable roles followed. During the rest of the 1980s, she racked up Oscar-nominated roles in Aliens, Gorillas in the Mist, and Working Girl before returning for Ghostbusters II in 1989.

Since then, Weaver has continued to prove herself one of the most versatile and gifted stars of her generation, with roles ranging from two more Alien sequels to Galaxy Quest to Snow White: A Tale of Terror to Avatar. She's also become known for her narration skills in various nature documentaries, and was most recently seen in Marvel's crossover Netflix series The Defenders. Her next major project will see her reprising her role as Dr. Grace Augustine in James Cameron's four Avatar sequels, the first of which will hit theaters in 2020.

Rick Moranis - Louis Tully

Like Harold Ramis, Rick Moranis rose to prominence via the success of SCTV, where he performed as his signature character Bob McKenzie, among other roles. The Bob McKenzie character, paired with Dave Thomas' Doug McKenzie, ultimately led to Moranis' feature film debut in 1983's Strange Brew. That initial comedy success then led to Ghostbusters.

After Ghostbusters hit big at the box office — thanks in no small part to Moranis' performance as the meek accountant Louis Tully — Moranis had one of the most impressive strings of hits of any comedy star in the 1980s. Over the next five years, he starred or co-starred in Brewster's Millions, Little Shop of Horrors, Ghostbusters II, Spaceballs, and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, cementing his status as a comedy giant.

The 1990s brought more film success via Honey, I Blew Up the Kid, The Flintstones, and Little Giants, but it also brought a departure from the spotlight for Moranis. After the death of his wife, Ann Belsky, in 1991, Moranis began spending more time with his family, and Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves in 1997 marked his last major live-action film role. He continued working occasionally as a voice actor throughout the 2000s, most notably in Disney's Brother Bear, and in 2007 he resurrected the Bob McKenzie character for the TV movie Bob & Doug McKenzie's Two-Four Anniversary. In 2018, he reprised his Spaceballs role of Dark Helmet for an episode of The Goldbergs.

Annie Potts - Janine Melnitz

Annie Potts was best known for TV roles on shows like Goodtime Girls and Romance Theatre when she landed the part of the Ghostbusters' eccentric secretary Janine Melnitz. Like everyone else in the film, it granted her a place as a comedy icon, but she wasn't done with hits in the 1980s just yet. In 1986, she launched two more iconic roles, as Molly Ringwald's friend Iona in the hit romcom Pretty In Pink and as Mary Jo Shively on the sitcom Designing Women.

Designing Women was a ratings hit, and Potts remained a part of the series for all 163 episodes, despite other cast changes. Since then, she's continued to work regularly, and remains a television mainstay thanks to roles on Any Day Now, Joan of Arcadia, Chicago Med, The Fosters, and most recently, Young Sheldon. She made a cameo appearance in the 2016 Ghostbusters film, and later this year she will reprise her voice role as Bo Peep in Pixar's Toy Story 4.

William Atherton - Walter Peck

William Atherton already had more than a decade of screen acting to his name by the time Ghostbusters rolled around, with roles in everything from The Sugarland Express to The Day of the Locust to Centennial. With his performance as the blowhard EPA inspector Walter Peck, he cemented his place as one of the most recognizable and memorable character actors of the 1980s, something he would only further cement four years later when he played reporter Richard Thornburg in another classic of the decade, Die Hard. Gifted with a physical presence and an ability to push back against comedy giants, he was the perfect straight man for the Ghostbusters to bounce off of.

Atherton continued working steadily in film and television throughout the 1990s and 2000s, with roles in Die Hard 2, The Pelican Brief, Bio-Dome, Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, The Practice, The Last Samurai, and many more. His acting output has slowed considerably over the last five years, and his last major role was as Viceroy Berto Mercado in the Syfy original series Defiance.

David Margulies - Mayor Lenny Clotch

David Margulies established himself on the screen — after first establishing himself on Broadway — as a gifted character actor in the late 1970s, with roles in films including All That Jazz, Dressed to Kill, and Hide in Plain Sight. With his role as the mayor of New York City in Ghostbusters, he entered the annals of great 1980s comedy authority figures, a gift he would wield again five years later in Ghostbusters II.

Margulies continued working regularly for the rest of his life, and quickly became a "That Guy" actor, one of those character performers recognized by nearly everyone even if they didn't know his name. Among his many films and TV shows that followed Ghostbusters were 9 ½ Weeks, Ishtar, Running on Empty, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Celebrity, Law & Order, The Sopranos, The Girl on the Train, A Most Violent Year, and Happyish. He died January 11, 2016 at the age of 78. His last major role was as Nobel Laureate and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel in the 2016 ABC miniseries Madoff.