Ernie Hudson believes he was "deliberately pushed aside" in 'Ghostbusters'.
The 77-year-old actor played ghostbuster Winston Zeddemore in the 1984 supernatural comedy, but he has claimed his role was made to be smaller than it was intended to be, and he's accused Coulmbia Pictures of not being "inclusive" by not having him appear alongside fellow ghostbusters Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and Dan Aykroyd in the theatrical poster.
Speaking on SiriusXM's 'The Howard Stern Wrap Up Show', he said: “The studio wasn’t [inclusive], and the studio continued not to be.
“So it made it very, very difficult because I was a part of it but then I very selectively was pushed aside … In the original script, Winston was in the very beginning of the movie. By the time we got ready to shoot the movie, Winston came in halfway through the movie. All those things … It definitely felt deliberate.”
Despite not being included in the promos, Ernie is "so thankful" to the fans who identified with his character.
He continued: "When the posters came out, I’m not on the poster. It took a long time. I went to the 30th anniversary release of the movie and all the posters are three guys. Now I know the fans see it differently, and I’m so thankful for the fans because the fans basically identified with Winston — especially young, I don’t want to say minority kids, but a lot of kids.”
Ernie admits he never wants to "blame" anything on being Black, but it took him a good decade before he could "make peace" with what happened.
He said: “I’m still not trying to take it personally.
“Anything bad, if you’re African American in this country, anything bad happens to you, you can always blame it on [being] Black. You don’t want to go there. That’s the last thing I want to do. I got nothing bad to say about anybody but it was hard. It took me 10 years to get past that and enjoy the movie and just embrace the movie. ‘Ghostbusters’ was really hard to make peace with.”
It didn't stop him from returning for the 1989 sequel 'Ghostbusters II' and he had a minor part in the 2021 reboot 'Ghostbusters: Afterlife'.
And he's asked for a bigger role in the next film in the series.
Ernie added: “Even now, we’re negotiating a new movie that’s gearing up to start shooting in March, and I’m like, ‘Guys, there’s a place … I’m not an add-on.'
“So if I’m going to do it, it has to make sense.”