We will be talking about one of the bigger reveals of the third act of Ghostbusters: Afterlife. If you haven't seen the movie yet and don't want to be spoiled, consider this your spoiler warning, and don't read beyond the following image.
We learn toward the end of the second act/the beginning of the third act of Ghostbusters: Afterlife that the movie would be doing Gozer again, and we see the corpse, sort of, of Ivo Shandor played by JK Simmons at the bottom of the mine. We find out that it was Gozer that Egon was trying to keep at bay, and various shenanigans of the movie cause Gozer to come to the real world. Director Jason Reitman spoke to Empire about bringing back Shandor and Gozer and why he cast Simmons as Shandor.
I'm so lucky in that I met I met JK Simmons in an audition for Thank You For Smoking, which of course led to him being in Juno and Up In The Air and everything I've ever done. We're linked, so he had to be in this, and we knew we were gonna have a Shandor who had one line and then he got ripped in half. By the way, the ripping in half was a practical effect. The same guy who made the Terror Dog animatronics created a JK Simmons that Olivia Wilde could grab by his hair and just rip it everywhere. The visual effects team put together a bid for the ripping of Shandor door and I said, "Oh no, we're doing this practical." I drew this frame on a whiteboard with a really shitty Gozer, with a flat top of the body getting ripped in half. The visual effects team was, like, "We're keeping this in the budget just in case – you're never gonna do it". The team built this scissoring JK Simmons puppet that would rip apart, and they would just fill it with goo and then rip it apart. It was wild and amazing.
Gozer, in Ghostbusters: Afterlife, is brought to life by not one, not two, but three different actresses at the end of the day. Reitman confirmed that "it's Olivia Wilde, but it is also Emma Portner – the movement of Gozer was brought to life by the great modern dancer Emma Portner, and the face is Olivia Wilde." Then the voice is Shohreh Aghdashloo, so it is a combination of those three actresses to bring Gozer to life in this movie. It really is a fascinating performance to watch, and knowing how many different people were used to make it all come together like that makes it all the more amazing that Reitman and his creative team were able to make Gozer look as awesome as they did in the final product.
Summary: From director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman, comes the next chapter in the original Ghostbusters universe. In Ghostbusters: Afterlife, when a single mom and her two kids arrive in a small town, they begin to discover their connection to the original ghostbusters and the secret legacy their grandfather left behind. The film is written by Gil Kenan & Jason Reitman.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife, directed by Jason Reitman, stars Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace, Annie Potts, and Paul Rudd. It was released on November 19th.