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Kidnapping Oscar is the twentieth chapter on the DVDs of Ghostbusters II. In this chapter. Janosz kidnaps Oscar from Dana.

Cast

Environmental

Locations

Plot

Louis Tully, Janine Melnitz, and Dana Barrett watched "The Lady from Shanghai" in Peter's living room. Janine asked if Elsa Bannister was the killer or not. Louis spouted out trivia about Rita Hayworth, the actress, portraying Elsa. Janine fed him some popcorn from a bowl next to an open Hi-C drink. Louis wondered why beautiful girls loved horses so much. He asked Janine if she loved horses. Janine replied, "No." Dana's expression and tone implied she wished they would leave. She assured them they did not have to stay and thought Peter Venkman would be back soon. Louis told her they did not mind. He asked Dana if she could see okay. There was a thunder clap outside. She checked her wrist watch. A window opened on its own in Peter's bedroom. Oscar turned around and looked. Dana felt a draft and went to go check on Oscar. The bed was empty. She looked out the open window and exclaimed in horror. She found Oscar on the ledge outside the apartment and yelled for Louis. Dana crawled out onto the ledge and called out to Oscar. Louis came in and popped in his head out the window then yelled out to Janine to call 911 immediately. Dana crawled across the ledge to Oscar. To her horror, Janosz flew down from the sky in a ghost form dressed like an English nanny. His eyes flashed red. Janosz's right arm extended and grabbed Oscar. Dana lunged too late. Oscar was placed in the baby carriage. They flew away. Dana went back into the apartment. Louis was freaked out they just saw a ghost. Dana informed him it was Janosz. Janine asked what was happening. Louis wondered what they should do. Janine asked where Oscar was. Dana believed Janosz to the Manhattan Museum of Art. Dana pulled Peter's green coat on. Louis asked her where she was going. Dana declared she was going to get her baby and rushed off. Louis stated they needed to find the Ghostbusters.

Egon Spengler, Ray Stantz, Peter Venkman, and Winston Zeddemore talked to the Psychiatric Doctor in a room at Parkview Psychiatric Hospital. They looked exhausted from trying to explain the situation to the doctor over and over. Peter buried his face in his arms. The doctor smoked. Ray repeated they believed the spirit of a 17th century Moldavian tyrant was alive and well in a painting at the Manhattan Museum of Art. The doctor was not convinced and asked them if there were any other paintings in the museum with bad spirits in them. Egon insisted he was wasting valuable time because Vigo was drawing strength from a Psychomagnotheric slime flow that had been collecting under the city. The doctor wanted them to tell him about the slime. Winston noted it was very potent stuff and they even made a toaster dance with it. The doctor thought he heard Winston say toaster. Winston also told him a bathtub tried to eat Peter's friend's baby. The doctor turned to Peter. Peter stated he thought Egon, Ray, and Winston were completely nuts.

In the Van Horne Pneumatic Station, the River of Slime churned and was an even higher level than previously seen. The river was almost up past the archways.

Well into the evening, a taxi cab pulled up to the Manhattan Museum of Art. Trash was blown all around by gusts of wind. Dana got out of her taxi and went into the museum. The doors sealed shut behind her. Psychomagnotheric slime flowed down and covered the doorway and the entire museum. Dana entered the Restoration room, ran to Oscar, and picked him up from an altar. Ancient symbols were carved on the altar. Dana was so relieved to be reunited with Oscar. Janosz revealed his presence and confessed he knew she would come. Dana warned him to stay away from them. Janosz promised her not to worry about Oscar being harmed. He revealed Oscar was chosen to be the vessel of the spirit of Vigo and she would be the mother of the ruler of the world. He asked if that sounded nice. Dana thought it sounded ludicrous and again warned him to stay away. Dana backed out of the circle of candles. Janosz mused they did not have a choice. He joked the painting in the room was not Gainsborough's "Blue Boy," he was Vigo. Dana refused to give up Oscar. She was telekinetically flung backwards and sealed out of the room, essentially in a prison cell. Oscar floated back to the altar. Dana screamed to Oscar and called Vigo a bastard.

Trivia

  • In the September 29, 1988 draft:
    • On page 92, Slimer hovers outside Peter's apartment, sentimentally googling over Mikey. Peter comes home, sees Slimer, yells at him to get away, Slimer licks his lips, Peter realizes he made mistake, and he is slimed.
      • In the movie, the scene is omitted.
    • On page 93, Jason Locke scowls at a young couple asking for directions to Second Avenue. He makes the woman's skirt fly up repeatedly.
      • In the movie, the scene is omitted.
    • On page 94, Lane Walker is cooking pasta but Peter is in a rush to get back to the Firehouse. They hug and kiss.
      • In the movie, the scene is omitted.
    • On page 95, Peter tells Slimer to beat it. Slimer gestures incoherently. Peter pulls down a window shade. Slimer comes inside and mimes and grunts. Lane starts to get it.
      • In the movie, the scene is omitted.
    • On page 96, Slimer gestures a cradling baby. They check and the crib is empty. Slimer beckons them to come outside with him. They discover Mikey is outside on the ledge.
      • In the movie, Dana feels a breeze and discovers Oscar is outside on the ledge.
    • On page 97, Peter goes out on the ledge and tells Mikey he has his whole life ahead of him. A nanny ghost materializes and its face looks like Jason's.
      • In the movie, Dana goes out on the ledge and the ghost is Janosz.
    • On page 98, Peter grabs Mikey just in time but the nanny ghost beats Peter with an umbrella then they get into a tug of war over it. Eventually, Peter lets go. The ghost's stretched arms smacks himself. He charged Peter.
      • In the movie, the Janosz ghost simply extends an arm and grabs Oscar and leaves.
    • On page 99, the pram slams into Peter and he drops Mikey who lands in the pram.
      • In the movie, the scene is omitted.
  • In the November 27, 1988 draft, on page 103, Dana is alone and half-watching a game show on TV when she feels a gust. She finds the crib empty and climbs out onto the ledge after Oscar only for Janosz in his ghost nanny form to appear and kidnap him.
  • Peter's apartment scene was filmed at set on Burbank Studios in Los Angeles.
  • Louis, Janine, and Dana watched "The Lady from Shanghai," a 1947 film noir directed by Orson Welles and starring Welles, his estranged wife Rita Hayworth and Everett Sloane.
  • Louis mentions the movie "Citizen Kane," in reference to Orson Welles.
  • Louis alludes to when Rita Hayworth left Welles and married Prince Aly Khan.
  • When Louis talks about Rita Hayworth, there is an orange box of Hi-C next to the popcorn.
  • Oscar is wearing a Winnie the Pooh onesie.
  • At one point, Janosz Poha was not the one to kidnap Oscar. A two headed dragon, creatures from a hellish world, a phantom taxicab, a giant pigeon, a face on the Moon, a vapor rising from the street, billboard figures, gargoyles come to life, and a horrible Santa Claus were pitched.[1][2]
  • The scene of Oscar's kidnapping evolved from Harold Ramis' initial idea about the baby walking like an adult.[3]
  • Thom Enriquez storyboarded an early version of the scene. It involved Slimer trying to warn Louis that Oscar was on the ledge but he was trying to make out with Janine. Louis looks over her shoulder and sees Slimer making a bunch of gestures. Peter and Dana return home and see the baby was missing. They look out the window and see the baby on the ledge with a monster. Peter goes onto the ledge and grabs the baby. Dana hands him a baseball bat and he swings at the monster.[4]
  • In the August 5, 1988 draft, on page 65, a low rumble is generated under Lane's apartment. The baby miraculously sits up, uses the crib to pull himself up to a standing position, climbs nimbly out, and walks across the floor to the open window. On page 67 to 68, Peter goes out on the ledge after the baby and grabs him.
  • When Dana first sticks her head out the window, the shot is flipped horizontally based on the line up of buildings in the background such as the Chrysler Building.
  • The Oscar on the ledge scene was filmed on a set representing the exterior of the building in Stage 16 at Burbank Studios in Los Angeles.[5]
    • Bo Welch built the set - two exterior walls and a 10 foot tall ledge.[6]
    • Chuck Gaspar built a special harness rig for the Deutschendorf twins portraying Oscar. It was a big leather diaper attached to a metal pole bolted down to the ledge. The diaper was hidden in the Deutschendorf's jumpsuit and the pole was hidden if their legs were kept in position. Just in case, several large airbags were placed below. The twins cooperated very well during filming.[7][8]
    • The twins' father Ron Deutschendorf stood on a ladder off-camera and made noises to make it look like the baby was looking out into the distance in the scene.[9]
  • In order of the ledge shot in the kidnapping to be incorporated with the matte painting, Mark Vargo and his plate crew positioned a camera about 40 feet up along one side of the soundstage. The crew had to climb up a wooden ladder and walk along a very narrow catwalk. The Vistavision camera was too heavy to carry so it was pulled up on pulleys.[10]
  • For the kidnapping scene, Peter MacNicol was dressed in drag and photographed in front of a bluescreen at ILM. The arm stretch was achieved through a piece of tubing covered with costume fabric and rigged to slide down a pole. For the wider shots, a miniature rod puppet and buggy were photographed in front of a bluescreen and manipulated by character performers Bob Cooper and David Allen.[11]
  • In the overhead shot of the apartment when Dana is trying to rescue Oscar, a taxi cab on the street passes a white truck. When Janosz gets closer to the apartment, the taxi does the same thing, meaning that stock footage was reused and edited.
  • Oscar's kidnapping is mentioned by Louis in the deleted scene You're My Cousin.[12]
  • The Parkview interiors were filmed at the Veteran's Administration Medical Center in Brentwood, California. The scene of the Ghostbusters walking down the halls with Louis were filmed at a side door service entrance of the Biltmore Hotel where scenes for the Sedgewick Hotel in the first movie were mostly filmed at.[13]
  • Winston mentions the Animated Toaster and the kinetic test from Chapter 13: Mood Slime and the Slime in Bathtub Attack in Chapter 14: A Tub Full of Slime.
  • A full scale replica of part of the museum was constructed inside a sound stage in Burbank Studios. In order to have the slime ooze from the mortar joints, above the doors, and all over the exterior, Chuck Gaspar and crew cut slits in the walls, over the doors, and so on then attached hoses connected to tanks that held 8000 gallons of slime. 40 people were needed to operate the tank, hoses, and valves. Another tank caught the run off and it was pumped back into the other tank. A week and a half was spent to rig this set.[14][15][16]
  • The wall of slime that enveloped the museum was filmed twice.[17] In the first take, the slime was too thin and not wide enough. A thicker slime mixture was employed for the successful second take but five cameras were struck with slime during filming.[18]
  • Museum interiors were filmed at Burbank Studios in Los Angeles.
  • Janosz references Gainsborough's The Blue Boy, a full-length portrait in oil by Thomas Gainsborough in 1770.
  • Floating Oscar in the museum took some doing. Chuck Gaspar's crew made a piece of sheet metal hidden in the baby's suit and suspended on four wires attached to an overhead rig. To prevent the baby from moving, the metal pan was attached to the suit with velcro.[19][20]
    • When Oscar was floating across the room, Gaspar pulled the rig by rope.
    • When Oscar was lined up to the altar, a radio-controlled servo controlled by Jay Halsey while Gaspar pulled the rope on a straight path.
  • In Ghostbusters Volume 1 #13:
    • On Page 6, Janine is wearing one of her outfits from Ghostbusters II.
  • In Ghostbusters Volume 1 #16:
    • On Page 3, Janosz painted a recreation of Gainsborough's Blue Boy.
  • In Ghostbusters International #4:
    • On Page 20, the scene is reminiscent of the Manhattan Museum of Art being covered in Psychomagnotheric Slime.

References

  1. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Dennis Muren says: "The ghost nanny sequence is another prime example of how things evolve and got better.The way this process of change would usually happen was that Ivan would send us a script. Three days later we would fly down for a meeting. Maybe Harold and Danny would be there, and the producers would be there and Chuck Gaspar--and we would all sort of hear the script through Ivan for the first time. During one of these meetings, he got to the two-headed flying dragon and he asked, 'Is this any good?' I said: 'I don't think so. We've seen it before and it doesn't really fit into this film. He said: 'Great, I agree. So come up with something else.' From there it was up to us to do just that."
  2. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Harley Jessup says: "We did dozens of concept drawings, working with key elements in the story--baby, ledge, New York, New Year's Eve--we presented a variety of solutions to the problem. It was really a chance to find something that would work ten stories up in Manhattan and to think of how it would get up there. Some of the ideas involved creatures from a hellish world, while others were more down-to-earth. We had a phantom taxicab that would fly up, transform and take the baby away. We had a giant pigeon and a face that would appear in the moon and a vapor that came up out of the street. Other concepts involved billboard figures and building gargoyles coming to life. We even thought of a horrible Santa Claus. In retrospect, some of the ideas seem a little screwy, but we were trying to be one of the scariest moments of the film."
  3. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 28-29. Cinefex, USA. Harold Ramis says: "The idea of having the baby out on the ledge was to offshoot of my having a baby walk like an adult. At one point, we were really considering doing that--but it would have involved either a stop-motion puppet or an adult in a baby suit. Neither of those approaches would have worked without it being in really dim light. As soon as Ivan thought about making a baby walk, he was not thrilled. It just seemed like too much--it made the baby too important."
  4. Wallace, Daniel (2015). Ghostbusters The Ultimate Visual History, p. 141, 144. Insight Editions, San Rafael CA USA, ISBN 9781608875108. Thom Enriquez says: "In the version I storyboarded, Slimer was involved a lot more, so I had Slimer warn Louis that the baby was out on the ledge. Louis is trying to make out with Janine and he looks over her shoulder, and you see Slimer using all these gestures. The sequence was longer. When Bill Murray shows up with Dana and they find out the baby is missing, they look out the window and see the baby on the ledge with a monster, and there's a physical struggle. Bill goes out there, Dana hands him a baseball bat, and he's swinging at this creature."
  5. Spook Central "California"
  6. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "Even though Oscar no longer had to walk, he still had to appear standing on the ledge of the building some ten stories above a crowded New York street. To accomplish this feat, Bo Welch built Venkman's corner loft apartment complete with two exterior walls and a ledge that stood ten feet above the stage floor. Then Chuck Gaspar had the task of devising a foolproof rig so that Oscar--interchangeably played by William T. Deutshcendorf and Henry J. Deutschendorf II--could stand up."
  7. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 25 footnote. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "On a studio set representing the exterior of the building, physical effects supervisor Chuck Gaspar constructed a harness rig to support the child and prevent him from falling."
  8. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Chuck Gaspar says: "We made a big leather diaper that was attached to a metal pole bolted down to the ledge. The diaper was hidden inside the baby's jumpsuit; and as long as his legs stayed in position, you could not see the pole because it went up the back of his leg and behind his back. For reverse angles, we simply placed it in front of the baby. There was no way the baby could get loose--he was locked in. Of course, down on the floor below we had large air bags for him to fall on, but there was really no way he could get free. Either one of the twins could have become angry or annoyed by the whole thing, but fortunately they both seemed quite content out on the ledge. Ivan got lucky when he chose those twins--they were great."
  9. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "To help direct the children, Deutschendorf stood on a ladder off-camera and made noises to try and make the performing infant appear to be looking off into the distance."
  10. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 29. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "To complete Oscar's dramatic adventure, a plate of the ledge set was photographed and then later reduced and placed into a matte painting by Mark Sullivan featuring the rest of the building and the street below. In order to get the correct angle on the ledge, Mark Vargo and his plate crew had to position a camera some forty feet up in the air along one side of the large soundstage. To reach this location, they had to climb a simple wooden ladder and then walk along a very narrow catwalk to the desired position. The Vistavision camera had to be elevated on pulleys since it was too heavy to be carried up the ladder."
  11. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 26 footnote. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "For identifiably close shots, Peter MacNicol was dressed in drag and photographed in front of a bluescreen. The arm stretch was a simple illusion employing a piece of tubing covered with costume fabric and rigged to slide down a pole. For wider shots, a miniature rod puppet and buggy were similarly photographed against blue. Character performers Bob Cooper and David Allen choreograph one of the miniature shots."
  12. Louis Tully (2022). Ghostbusters Ultimate Edition (2022), Ghostbusters II, You're My Cousin (1989) (Blu-ray ts. 00:50-00:56). Columbia Pictures. Louis Tully says: "We're gonna be in real big trouble if we don't move fast. That ghost guy came in and took that little baby away. It was just a scared little baby."
  13. Wallace, Daniel (2015). Ghostbusters The Ultimate Visual History, p. 151. Insight Editions, San Rafael CA USA, ISBN 9781608875108. Tom Duffield says: "The interiors were set at the VA Medical Center in Brentwood. When they're coming out of the mental hospital in their ghostbusters uniforms, that was shot at a side door service entrance of the Biltmore Hotel."
  14. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 33. Cinefex, USA. Chuck Gaspar says: "Ivan wanted the slime to really ooze out of the mortar joints, from above the doors and all over the building exterior. So we cut slits in the walls over the doors and so on, and then attached hoses to the slits and controlled them with valves. The hoses were connected to eleven dump tanks that held a total of eight thousand gallons of slime. There were so many hoses that we needed forty people to operate them all. In front of the set we had another tank to catch the run-off, which later we pumped back out with a vacuum truck. All together, it took about a week-and-a-half to rig the set."
  15. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 33. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "For dramatic closeups, a full-scale replica of part of the museum was constructed inside a soundstage at the Burbank Studios."
  16. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 33-34. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "The slime wall had to be filmed twice. The first time the slime was too thin and the set was not quite wide enough for the effect Reitman wanted. For the second take, the set was extended and Gaspar ordered a thicker mixture. The retake was much more successful, though some of the hoses squirted out so far that slime actually struck one of the five cameras recording the event."
  17. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 33. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "The slime wall had to be filmed twice. The first time the slime was too thin and the set was not quite wide enough for the effect Reitman wanted. For the second take, the set was extended and Gaspar ordered a thicker mixture."
  18. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 34. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "The retake was much more successful, though some of the hoses squirted out so far that slime actually struck one of the five cameras recording the event."'
  19. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 34. Cinefex, USA. Chuck Gaspar says: "Floating that little baby was a bit hair-raising. I don't mind floating a grownup, because it they fall, at least they can protect themselves. But a baby doesn't know how to do that. The gag worried me, but we did it in such a way that the baby could possibly get out of the harness. The unit we made was a piece of sheet metal hidden inside his suit and suspended on four wire attached to an overhead rig. The metal pan was attached to the suit with velcro so there was no way the baby could move. It was so tight, in fact, that at one point the baby started fussing and we had to loosen the velcro a little bit. Even so, he could not roll off the pan because it was inside his suit. During the takes, we had everybody standing around watching pretty closely, and as soon as the baby traveled from point A to point B there were people right there to grab him. Once again, the baby was amazing. He never cried or did anything. For the straight pull-through across the room, the rig was controlled by a rope that I pulled myself because I was kind of nervous. The turn was so delicate that to make it nice and smooth we did it with a radio-controlled servo. For that move, I once again brought in Jay Halsey. At the beginning of the shot, I just pulled the rope and walked the baby along the straight path. When we got to the point where he had to turn, Jay radio-controlled the move. Then we simply lowered the baby down onto the podium."
  20. Eisenberg, Adam (November 1989). Ghostbusters Revisited, Cinefex magazine #40, page 34. Cinefex, USA. Line reads: "For additional close-ups where the wires would have been visible, the metal pan was concealed under the baby's suit. Depending on the angle, the pole was either held by hand or placed on a cart underneath the camera."

Gallery

Selected Screengrabs

Discarded Material

Behind the Scenes

Storyboards of Final Version

Storyboards of Previous Drafts

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