The Internet went bonkers this morning when the first full-length trailer for the new Ghostbusters reboot came out. People scrutinized every detail, from the look of the ghosts to the size of the proton packs. But even the most eagle-eyed watchers probably didn’t notice the URL to a secret Ghostbusters website hiding in plain sight.
At the 1:04 mark of the trailer, Kristen Wiig’s scientific bonafides are evidenced by a shot of a whiteboard full of equations. But at the very top of the board is a group of seemingly nonsense mathematical figures reading, “[Pa/RA(NO x RM)alS + UD1es/Lab]COM.’’
If you plug ParanormalStudiesLab.com into your browser, it takes you to a site run by the fictional Kenneth P. Higgins Institute of Science, featuring photos and blueprints for a ghost trap, psychokinetic energy (PKE) meter, and the Ecto-1 ghostmobile.
While the Higgins Institute may not be real, the site features a video starring an actual MIT scientist. James Maxwell, a senior postdoctoral associate at the MIT Laboratory for Nuclear Science, helped the creative minds producing Ghostbusters make the science behind the phantasmic gadgets as close to reality as possible.
“The first thing that they asked me was, ‘How would a proton pack work with as few huge leaps of miraculous science as possible?’’’ Maxwell says in the video. “It’s been really fun to look at the cool ideas the writers come up with and try to say, ‘OK, that’s a cool idea. How about if you do this and then it would sound a little better?’’’
Check out the video below.