Bill Murray Dropped Out of Upcoming Wes Anderson Flick Due To COVID

by Blake Ells

Bill Murray is a mainstay of Wes Anderson’s movies. From The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou to Lost in Translation, the Hollywood icon has elevated the director’s films for decades. But he’s unable to join the massive cast of his latest project, Asteroid City.

The movie began shooting in September, and a source tells Variety that Bill Murray contacted Covid-19 just before filming began. His role was recast due to the filming schedule. The film was shot in Spain.

It it presumed that the role was filled by Steve Carrell, who is definitely part of the cast. It’s quite a cast. The film stars Tom Hanks, Margot Robbie, Scarlett Johansson, Jeffrey Wright, Bryan Cranston, Tilda Swinton, Ed Norton and Adrien Brody. It also features another regular in Anderson’s films, Jason Schwartzman.

Bill Murray was dropped from another film earlier this year. In April, there were allegations of “inappropriate behavior” from the 71-year-old on the set of “Being Mortal,” a film starring Aziz Ansari. Murray since said that he has spent a lot of time thinking about the incident and how his actions were interpreted. But sources tell Variety that the two film incidents are completely unrelated.

Searchlight released the last three Wes Anderson movies, but this time the filmmaker partners with Focus Features. Their parent is Universal Pictures. The new film from Anderson is described as “a poetic meditation on the meaning of life.” It takes place in a fictional American desert town in 1955 at the Junior Stargazer convention. The convention will bring students and parents from across the country together and, as they say, hijinks ensue.

No release date is set for the film. It is currently listed as being in “Post-production” at iMDB. It is due before the end of the year.

What’s Bill Murray’s Next Project?

Bill Murray’s most recent films were an appearance in Ghostbusters: Afterlife and The French Dispatch in 2021. The latter was also a Wes Anderson film. He was in the Sophia Coppola film On the Rocks in 2020. In 2019, he was in Zombieland: Double Tap and The Dead Don’t Die. He’s remained very busy throughout the pandemic years.

His next film is The Greatest Beer Run Ever which is due on September 30. The Peter Farrelly film stars Russell Crowe and Zac Efron. He is still attached to the Ansari film Being Mortal according to iMDB. The movie also stars Seth Rogen. It is yet to be seen if he’ll remain a part of that cast. He’s also attached to Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which is set for 2023. Bum’s Rush is in pre-production. Anne Hathaway is listed as his co-star on the project, though no other stars are currently attached to the film.