Two weeks out from release, Paramount has lifted the curtain on an all-new featurette for Ghost in the Shell, which essentially places the Ghost in the shell.
Coming to us via Coming Soon, the two-minute promo features director Rupert Sanders and members of the VFX team discussing the film’s “Shelling” sequence – that is, the moment when Scarlett Johansson’s Ghost is uploaded into a cutting-edge synthetic body. Those familiar with Masamune Shirow’s genre-defining manga series know all too well that it’s this process, one which raises nine kinds of existential questions, where Shirow’s series finds its name, and it’s enough to spark a bona fide identity crisis for ScarJo’s fearless leader.
Known simply as The Major in Paramount’s live-action interpretation, Ghost in the Shell‘s heroine is the driving force behind neo-Tokyo’s Section 9, an elite counter-terrorism unit comprised of the finest mercenaries in the city. Their target? Kuze, a rogue AI that purportedly holds some of the secrets behind The Major’s origin. Initially created in the bowels of Hanka Robotics, Scarlett Johansson’s kick-ass android is under the belief that she (it?) is a valuable resource for the company, but it’s the advent of Kuze that forces our protagonist to question everything she knows.
On March 31st, Ghost in the Shell jump-starts Hollywood’s new wave of big-budget anime movies – Death Note, Alita: Battle Angel and Akira (?) are also cramming up the pipeline. Those scathing allegations of whitewashing have no doubt cast a cloud over Rupert Sanders’ live-action reboot in the build-up to release, but can Paramount’s cyberpunk thriller carve out an audience of its own? Time will tell.