Director Paul Feig has shared why he thinks his 2016 Ghostbusters movie didn't do well at the box office.

The reboot had incredible potential and an all-star female cast, including Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon.

However, the film did not live up to its hype - fans of the original movie were not impressed and it earned $370 million worldwide at the box office. According to Variety, the film's distributor Sony Pictures lost up to $80 million (US$50 million).

At the time of its release, the all-female casting choice was labelled a "gimmick" by CNN. A sequel that had been planned was later quashed - despite Feig and the cast signing on for two more movies, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

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Now Feig has shared why he thinks the movie wasn't a box office hit. In an interview with Julia Cunningham on US radio station SiriusXM, Feig blames 2016's political events, Fox News reports.

He called 2016 and "ugly year" and believes the film's release was "intertwined with Hillary Clinton and the anti-Hillary movement."

"It was the year where I don't know, just everyone went to a boiling point," Feig said.

"I don't know if it was having an African American president for eight years teed them up or something, but they were ready to explode."

Those baffled by Feig's casting choice in 2016 included none other than Preisdent Donald Trump.

"By the time I announced in ... 2015, when I announced I was going to do it, it started. There's tape of Donald Trump being like, 'Now the Ghostbusters' are women, what's going on?'" he said.

"Like, it's crazy how people got nuts about women trying to be in power or be in positions that they weren't normally in."

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Ghostbusters fans have another reboot to look forward to - Ghostbusters: Afterlife is set to release in March 2021. The film is directed by Jason Reitman and stars Paul Rudd and Stranger Thing's Finn Wolfhard.