CONTACT TROY @ GBHQ:
About the EIC Troy Benjamin:
TROY BENJAMIN is an author, writer, producer, part-time radio and on-camera host, sometimes dabbles in theatrical film marketing, and probably most noticeably an executive (but not a weirdo) nerd with an encyclopedic knowledge of the geek variety.
As an author, he’s the writer of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Seasons One, Two and Three Declassified, part of the writing staff on the Guidebook to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and is currently in development and writing several forthcoming projects.
As a producer, he’s co-produced the documentary on urban planning and the iconic Jane Jacobs and Robert Moses, Citizen Jane: Battle for the City for Altimeter Films, the Alfonso Cuarón executive produced look at the evolution of filmmaking techniques, Looking to the Stars: The Evolution of Space Films, and is also a co-producer on the upcoming behind the scenes documentary Cleanin’ Up the Town: Remembering Ghostbusters for Bueno Productions. In addition, he’s produced marketing and DVD behind the scenes content on a variety of projects with Marvel, Disney, Lucasfilm, Universal, Fox, Paramount, Sony and Warner Bros. on properties including Star Wars, Transformers, X-Men, Fantastic Four, Alien, Gravity, Halo, Peanuts, The X-Files, Deadpool and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
And last but certainly not least; you might recognize him as an on-camera host for Ivan Reitman’s Ghostbusters-centric production company Ghost Corps, and the YouTube show Still Playing with Toys Live. Or you might recognize his voice as a frequent podcast guest and the co-host of the Ghostbusters Interdimensional Crossrip, a weekly Ghostbusters fan podcast (that yes, he also produces).
More on Troy at stillplayingwithtoys.net
Ghostbusters HQ - a premiere fan-produced magazine and Ghostbusters fansite dedicated to the Ghostbusters film, television, comic book, and video game franchise. In-depth and insightful articles ranging from the latest news to behind the scenes and interviews. Home of the Ghostbusters podcast the Ghostbusters Interdimensional Crossrip.
THE PAST, THE PRESENT, AND THE FUTURE:
Ghostbusters HQ (or GBHQ) was a Ghostbusters fansite that started back in 1996 and "ran" through 2008. I put ran in quotes because toward the end, it was like a bucket of bolts traveling through the stars, threatening to explode at moment's notice. After deciding to call it quits, the site remained online for a few years before getting hit by a pretty gnarly malware attack that forced the site to be completely shut down.
It was a time before the internet fanboy community hit its stride. A time when all we were was fans of a movie that was in a bit of a lurch. We dreamed that someday there would be a rekindling of the franchise that we loved, but aside from some show on the horizon called Extreme Ghostbusters and the possibility that it might yield more for us to obsess over and enjoy, there wasn't a whole lot going on for the self-proclaimed Ghostheads.
But let me rewind a second, just this past year, the proprietor of the current company that I work for (to his defense, while I was dressed in full head-to-toe Ghostbusters regalia for Halloween) asked me just recently, "Why do you like Ghostbusters so much?" Not wanting to launch into a full-on nerd out in front of the boss, the brain really started thinking but the mouth said, "I don't know, I guess because I grew up with it." But the reality was, there was so much that I didn't know where to start. As a kid, they had cool gadgets, got to go on fun adventures, were funny, and had a pet ghost with a ravenous appetite. But then it occurred to me that, for the longest time, I hadn't seen the real, uncensored, non-TV broadcast version of Ghostbusters until I was in the seventh grade (circa 1994).
After a family vacation to Orlando, which of course included a trip to Disney World and Universal Studios, I was in such a state of disappointment that I wasn't able to see the then on the brink of closing "Ghostbusters Spooktacular" stageshow. I did take photos of the outside, I did jump into the gift shop (which was a horrible shade of what I'm sure it once was), but never got to see the show. When we got home to Colorado, I suddenly recalled all of my childhood memories of watching Real Ghostbusters on Saturday mornings, stringing out a Ghost Trap in advance of my dad getting home from work (it was my job as a Junior Ghostbuster to protect the family from the occasional paranormal invader that only I could see through my Ecto Goggles - which had those horrible prongs on the sides of them for the Ghost Popper darts). But now here I was, several years later and an "older wiser" Troy (in junior high school) and for some reason, my interest in Ghostbusters was rekindled.
A trip to the K-Mart in Parker, Colorado (then the only outlet for purchasing of many goods and services including VHS tapes) soon after yielded a true, honest to God copy of the original Ghostbusters film. Ever since airing in 1988 on ABC, I had worn my self-recorded copy of the film into the 1/4 inch ground. I got home and watched the movie and, to my surprise, the "uncensored" version of the movie was ten times more entertaining. Things suddenly made sense. They said things like "Prehistoric Bitch" and Venkman burst out of the hotel ballroom proclaiming that he kicked some ass.
Junior high school Troy was all over it... again.
At that point, our good friend the interwebs was still finding its feet. You know, like Bambi learning how to walk - it looked just as goofy and was just about as useful. So I hit the 28.8 modem, logged into America Online, sat and waited ten hours for the home screen to load, then did a search for Ghostbusters.
The first thing that came up was Bill Emkow's "Ghostbusters Homepage" where, as they say, everything began. I posted to a "message board" a pretty novel thing at the time, learned things about Ghostbusters that I never knew, and all-around shot the shit with people that had good senses of humor, enjoyed Ghostbusters, and just wanted to dig on it with a bunch of people that you'd never met.
For some reason, call it childhood ambition, I thought I could create a webpage like Bill's but, you know... funny. Well, funnier. So I took up AOL's offer of 10mb of free webspace or whatever ridiculousness it happened to be at the time and opened "Troy's Ghostbusters Headquarters" in 1996. My claim to exclusive content was that I was able to ape the entire Universal Studios Orlando "Ghostbusters Spooktacular" website before USF took it down when the ride closed (I guess it was my tribute to never getting to see it live).
AOL begat some weird free hosting site like Geocities or something, Geocities begat another hosting site that I can't remember the name of, then this funny dude named Neil offered web space and ghostbustershq.com was born.
Over the years, the site grew. The people that I had met along the way started to accumulate. Suddenly we had a message board that was getting a ridiculous amount of traffic that we never expected. And, as so often happens, friendly competition turned into some... heated... moments (which, looking back are some of the silliest things that a now adult can look back and say that he was a part of). But amid all of the chaos, there were so many good things that happened. So many things that I was proud of. So many things that stand out in my mind as what defined Ghostbusters HQ apart from all the other web offerings.
But then, technology prevailed - and I'm an old dude who didn't keep up with the HTMLs that all the kids did, and doesn't find a whole lot of free time on his hands like he did back in high school, when he should have been paying more attention to algebra or something else that I still rarely use on a daily basis.
There are so many other GREAT Ghostbusters websites that are now organic and user-generated. Sites like Proton Charging and GBFans (both of which I'm proud to say I was there to see born and grow into the awesome sites that they are now), which utilize Wiki technology and have vast message boards and tons of other doohickies and googledads that I could never keep up with on GBHQ.
A Ghostbusters HQ Tribute site was opened up in 2012 to post some of the favorite interviews and anecdotes that I had accumulated over the years, but like everything else, it started gathering dust for a few years.
Enter the new Ghostbusters films on the horizon and the promise of everything to come. There's such a flurry of information (and a lot of misinformation) thanks to the instant nature of what the internet has become. I found that a lot of my time interacting with the community was assuaging fans who had been misinformed by click bait-fueled articles and comment hate.
And suddenly I got the bug again, to rebuild something out of Ghostbusters HQ from its ashes... and that's where you are today:
The goal of the new Ghostbusters HQ is to become the premiere online magazine for fans to reach to as another source for in-depth and insightful articles. GBHQ isn't going to take the place of any of the more central fan-hubs like A.J.'s fantastic GBFans, but rather my hope is it'll be your periodic stop for a good read or two. News, editorials, hopefully a lot of great interviews and behind the scenes are on the horizon.
See you on the other side.