The Hollywood Reporter revealed that the rebooted “Ghostbusters,” which replaced the all-male cast with an all-female cast, made $46 million domestically in its first weekend. The earnings would be respectable if not for the fact that the CGI-heavy film cost $146 million to make. Considering that marketing a summer blockbuster can cost upwards to $150 million, the first weekend numbers do not look promising.

The idea of an all-female “Ghostbusters” started a social media row which turned white hot last spring when the first trailer was rolled out. Some male fans of the old film were dubious, to say the least, about the gimmick of changing the genders in a once popular franchise.

The skepticism elicited a violent reaction in turn from feminists who condemned the criticism as sexist and worst.

The politicization of a movie about a group of ghost exterminators is a strange phenomenon that is sadly par for the course in the modern, hyper-politically correct age. Artistically, there is nothing wrong with changing the genders of a favorite movie and then rebooting it. But if the thing is seen as a gimmick to sex up an otherwise stale movie, it may be understandable why the opening box office has this far been lukewarm.

To be sure, Sony, which produced the film, is already talking about a sequel. Whether that move will be seen as sending good money after bad remains to be seen.

The original “Ghostbusters” starred Saturday Night Live alums Dan Aykroyd and Bill Murray, as well as Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson as a group of down and out paranormal researchers who decide to monetarize their passion by becoming ghost exterminators. After an initial success, they run afoul of the EPA, which shuts them down and throws them in jail.

They come back to save New York City from an otherworldly apocalypse. The movie spun a sequel in which our heroes essentially did the same thing. A third movie had been rumored but was stuck in development hell for various reasons, partly due to Bill Murray’s reluctance to do the film and, ultimately, due to Harold Ramis’ dying and becoming a ghost himself.

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