One night in June 2021, Gary Grooberson went to the local Walmart. Vinz Clortho, in wisp form, flew into the store after him. Gary made his way to the frozen foods aisle. He opened a door of a refrigerator fully stocked with Baskin-Robbins ice cream. He took out a Jamoca. A woman screamed elsewhere in the store. Gary turned his head in reaction but continued on to the next aisle. He saw the toppings and stepped forward to the shelf. He snickered at the sight of the blue velvet flavor and walked past a shelf of Stay Puft Marshmallows. Something moved in one of the 10 ounce bags. Gary doubled back and stared at the bag. An entity tore a hole from the inside and emerged, yawning and rubbing its eyes. It was a Mini-Pufts, a tiny but not identical version of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. It saw Gary, smiled, and stepped forward but it fell off the bag and landed on its face. It stood up and the imprint of the shelf vanished. It stepped forward. Gary was in awe. He laughed and waved to it. It marched forward but stopped at the edge of the shelf. It turned around and looked at its surroundings. Gary poked its butt. The Mini-Puft frowned, turned around, and smiled. It bit Gary's finger. More Mini-Pufts burst out of bags. Several on a Roomba drove into Gary's left shoe. One hopped onboard the Roomba and they ram into the shelving on the opposite side. There were tons of Mini-Pufts all over the aisle. The Roomba ran one over as it drove out of the aisle. A few floated onto the shelf of Stay Puft Marshmallows with little paper umbrellas. One impaled a Mini-Pufts' head from behind. It pulled on the handle and the umbrella closes on its head. One punted a regular marshmallow off the shelf.
Gary was horrified and hurried past a Fourth of July themed display for grills. A lone Mini-Puft on a grill threw its hat like a discus onto another grill populated with many Pufts. One jabbed two Pufts with a skewer. One on the dial managed to turn the grill on. A Puft on top melted. One lied on its stomach and watched its spit drift down. The Pufts on the skewer roasted. A Mini-Puft kicked the head off another. Another forced a Puft onto a Stay Crisp Graham Crackers and laid a Hershey bar on top of it. Several carried a blow torch over and heated up the chocolate bar. Two Mini-Pufts pushed a blender off a shelf with one inside. Another Puft landed inside another blender. They raced over. One pushed the other off the shelf then turned the blender on and watched as the Puft inside levitated. The one on the shelf mashed buttons. A Puft came up from behind and headbutted the other into the buttons. The Puft inside splattered.
Gary came out an aisle then froze. Vinz Clortho, in Terror Dog form, was across from him with his head in a Purina Dog Chow bag scarfing away. Gary quietly backed up. The Mini-Pufts on the Roomba crashed into his shoe then drove on. Vinz lifted its head out of the bag and stared at Gary. Gary tried to talk to it but Vinz cut him off with a roar. Gary threw his Baskin-Robbins at Vinz's head and ran away, screaming. Vinz chased after him, knocking clothing racks aside, but he slid into some mannequins. He shook a mannequin arm off its head. Gary ran out into the parking lot. Just when the automatic doors closed, Vinz burst through the glass a bit too fast and stuttered. Gary made it to his car. He jumped in headfirst through where the windshield used to be, sat up in the driver's seat and fumbled with his keys. One of Vinz's paws stomped down on the hood. He snarled. The tires squealed and flattened. Vinz looked down then turned back, roared, and lunged at Gary.
Behind The Scenes
On September 26, 2019, it was reported filming was taking place at a Walmart in Deerfoot City.
On September 28, 2019, location manager Bruce Brownstein posted a close up photo of a package of Stay Puft Marshmallows.
On September 30, 2019, Jason Reitman posted a bts photo of the crew during a night shoot.
On December 20, 2021, Eric Steelberg confirmed filming took place in the Deerfoot City Walmart on September 28, 2019.
- Interiors were shot in the Deerfoot City Shopping Centre's Walmart in Calgary. Walmart.
- Very little was changed in the Walmart aside from changing the price tags from Canadian to U.S. Dollars, adding Fourth of July dressing, and gags for the Mini-Pufts and Vinz Clortho.
- Production filmed at the Deerfoot City Walmart over three nights from store closing around 10 pm to 5 am the next day.
- During filming at the Deerfoot City Walmart, Mckenna Grace and Josie Reitman, Jason Reitman's daughter, played around since it was reserved to him until 9 am the next morning. They rode around in tricycles wearing unicorn onesies shooting Nerf guns at each other. They later made a toilet roll fort in a shelf.
- In the first shot of Grooberson in the Walmart, on the far right is a Ghostbusters Slime Time black T-shirt on display.
- In the same shot, on the right, the spelling "Vision Centre" is exclusive to Canada. It should have been changed to "Vision Center."
- Grooberson picks out a pint of Baskin-Robbins. In the first Ant-Man movie, Paul Rudd's character Scott Lang briefly works at one until he's fired for lying on his resume.
- Grooberson chuckles at the blue velvet flavor of ice cream topping, a nod to David Lynch's "Blue Velvet" movie.
- A 10 ounce bag of Stay Puft Marshmallows in Walmart sells for $1.20.
- Arjen Tuiten was going to have Billy Bryan make one practical Mini-Puft puppet, the one that bites Gary Grooberson, but they ran out of time in production and couldn't make one.
- The Mini Puft in the middle of the s'more was one of the very first ideas during preproduction of Afterlife.
- Several Mini Pufts are nods fictional characters:
- Mary Poppins
- Ian Malcolm's famous pose from Jurassic Park
- Terminator's death in Terminator 2.
- The Mini-Puft destroyed in the blender was voiced by Will Files on helium.
- The dog food is a callback to the first movie, Chapter 18: Terror on the Tavern, when Louis Tully initially thought someone brought a dog to his party and later he meekly offers it a Milkbone.
- Vinz Clortho eats from Purina Dog Chow Complete Adult with Real Chicken bags.
- When Gary Grooberson comes upon Vinz Clortho eating bags of dog food, Jason Reitman didn't think the sound the Vinz crunching the food sounded violent enough, so re-recording mixer Will Files added the sound of a lion eating an animal.
- Grooberson was about to call Vinz a nice doggie like Louis Tully did in the first movie but is interrupted by a roar.
- For the Terror Dogs in Ghostbusters: Afterlife, re-recording mixer Will Files had work with sounds with low fidelity quality. Using the originals as a foundation, they edited it, augmented it, added their own voices pitched down to blend with the animal sounds.
- Vinz Clortho's clumsy exit was a callback to the first movie, Chapter 17: "Who Brought the Dog?", when he crashed Louis Tully's party.
- Vinz Clortho was a mix of puppetry and CGI.
- Grooberson running to his car and Vinz catching up was a night shoot in the Deerfoot City Walmart parking lot.
- Like Louis Tully, Grooberson has an awkward moment before he is possessed. The weight of Vinz causes his tires to go flat.
- Oliver Cooper was cast as a security guard at Walmart but his scene was ultimately cut.[Note 1]
- According a private email correspondence between Eric Reich, of GhostCorps, and Ghostbusters Wiki administrator mrmichaelt on January 6, 2022, it was revealed Oliver Cooper "was a security guard in Walmart, it was unfortunately cut."
- Inguanzo, Ozzy (2021). Ghostbusters: Afterlife The Art and Making of the Movie, p. 158. Titan Books, London UK, ISBN 1789096529. Line reads: "A variety of Stay Puft products are featured on store shelves at the Summerville Walmart, where Gary Grooberson rolls up to satisfy his late-night cravings."
- imgur post 9/26/19
- Bruce Brownstein instagram 9/28/19
- Jason Reitman instagram 9/30/19
- Eric Steelberg instagram 12/20/2021
- Parade "Ghostbusters Then and Now! See the Original Cast Today and the New Stars of Ghostbusters: Afterlife" 10/29/2021 Line reads: "For Ghostbusters: Afterlife, exteriors were shot in Horsethief Canyon, the Drumheller water tower and on highways 570 and 848. Interiors were shot in and around Calgary, Alberta, including the Deerfoot City Walmart, the Apple Pie Cafe in Beiseker and Macleod's Java Shop. Grandpa Egon's barn was a set constructed in Canada."
- Go Creative Show YouTube "Ghostbusters Afterlife Production Design (with Francois Audouy) GCS291" 39:27-39:33 12/6/2021 Francois Audouy says: "You know the only thing I had to do in there really was change the prices from Canadian Dollars to U.S. Dollars."
- Go Creative Show YouTube "Ghostbusters Afterlife Production Design (with Francois Audouy) GCS291" 40:10-40:36 12/6/2021 Francois Audouy says: "We had-we did have to create a sort of Fourth of July dressing story and brought in specific gags for the Mini-Pufts to interact with and that-there's also sort of like a vignette with the Terror Dog that had to be set up for real because there was of course there was a real, practical Terror Dog that had been created for the scene."
- Go Creative Show YouTube "Ghostbusters Afterlife Production Design (with Francois Audouy) GCS291" 39:41-39:51 12/6/2021 Francois Audouy says: "We shot over three nights from like closing hours around 10 o'clock until 5 am or something and that was really great."
- Entertainment Weekly YouTube "'Ghostbusters: Afterlife' Cast Breaks Down 3rd Installment | Around the Table | Entertainment Weekly" 27:23-27:59 11/19/2021 Jason Reitman says: "Oh my God, so my daughter Josie and Mckenna who are the same age, and a big reason your character exists is because of my daughter, we're in a Walmart, we were shooting with Paul. We were doing it overnight and the Walmart was ours overnight and I went up to Josie and I said we have this place 'til nine in the morning, you can stay up as late as you want, do whatever you want, we own the place and the two of them looked at me and they ran and then the next time I saw them was they were on tricycles in unicorn onesies shooting each other with Nerf guns."
- Entertainment Weekly YouTube "'Ghostbusters: Afterlife' Cast Breaks Down 3rd Installment | Around the Table | Entertainment Weekly" 28:16-28:24 11/19/2021 Mckenna Grace says: "I always wanted to go behind it and like make a little aisle behind it and so Josie and I did that. We went and sat behind it. I think that we found like a chicken nugget back there like it was how--"
- Ghostbusters Interdimensional Crossrip "#743 - Arjen Tuiten, Special Make-Up & Live Acton Creature Effects Designer" 39:23-39:55 11/29/2021 Arjen Tuiten says: "What I did was I emailed Jason. I said, "Y'know, can we just at least build one practical one? That bites Grooberson. The one that bites him. We should do that as a little puppet. And he loved it. It's just that we simply ran out of time. They were already shooting the sequence and it's so much work. And my idea was to have-because I know Billy Bryan very well, who built the original Stay Puft, and also performed in it. I said, "Y'know, it'd be great if Bill could just come over to my shop and build that for two weeks. It'd be full circle for him."
- Entertainment Weekly "How a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man got toasted in Ghostbusters: Afterlife" 10/8/2021 Kerry Joseph says: "one of the very first ideas in preproduction that stayed all the way through to the final film. Being Marshmallow Men, I think we had to do that. It never went away."
- Dobly YouTube "Embracing Sonic Nostalgia with "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" | Sound + Image Lab" 47:30-47:38 11/23/2021 Will Files says: "There's a moment when one of the marshmallow men gets blended up and at the end he goes "Hee..." that's me on helium."
- Variety "How ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ Pays Homage to the Original With Audio Easter Eggs" 11/24/2021 Article reads: "Files says that one of the first sounds heard when the characters are introduced in "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" is a terror dog crunching on dog food, but when Reitman heard the sound, it didn't seem violent enough for him. "What you’re hearing,” Files reveals, "is actually the sound of a lion eating an animal"."
- Variety "How ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ Pays Homage to the Original With Audio Easter Eggs" 11/24/2021 Article reads: "Bringing back the terror dogs, also featured in the original, presented a greater challenge. When he came across the soundtrack, Files says, the quality was low fidelity. So he used the original effects as a foundation. "We found sounds and tried to guess what the sources were," he explains. "We guessed they were lions and tigers and started playing with them, augmenting them, and we also put our own voices in, pitched down to blend with the animal sounds"."
- IGN YouTube "Ghostbusters: Afterlife - Exclusive Trailer Breakdown with Director Jason Reitman" 08:44-09:15 7/26/2021 Jason Reitman says: "And our Terror Dog is a mix of puppetry and beautiful CG. There's a spectral form of the Terror Dog as well in this trailer. You know, something about the original when you try to kind of breakdown the way the Terror Dogs worked in the original film, there were gaps left in between the possessions and the moments which you saw the mechanics of the Terror Dog mythology and we wanted to explore that the spectral Terror Dogs looked like."