Ghost in the Shell set to lose $60 million at the box office

A Paramount recently admitted the whitewashing controversy may have played a role

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The Independent Culture

With negative reviews and a whitewashing controversy governing the conversation surrounding Ghost in the Shell, Paramount/DreamWorks studios look set to lose around $60 million due to poor box-office takings.

Scarlett Johansson’s blockbuster took had a $19 million opening weekend in the US - taking $2 million in the UK - and has an estimated global taking of $200 million, according to Deadline.

Unfortunately for the studio, Ghost in the Shell had a production budget of $110 million - sources telling the aforementioned publication it may have realistically been around $180 million. Including added promotional costs, the film would have cost around $250 million.

Paramount's domestic distribution chief Kyle Davies recently said the whitewashing controversy surround Johansson’s casting may have been partly to blame.

"We had hopes for better results domestically. I think the conversation regarding casting impacted the reviews," Davis stated. "You've got a movie that is very important to the fanboys since it's based on a Japanese anime movie.

"So you're always trying to thread that needle between honouring the source material and make a movie for a mass audience. That's challenging, but clearly, the reviews didn't help.”

Along with the whitewashing controversy, many fans of the anime have criticised Ghost in the Shell for being style over substance and avoids the deeper philosophical questions raised by the source material

Plus, the Rotten Tomatoes score plummeted from 71 per cent to 45 per cent following the film’s wide release, something that obviously hurt the box office takings. 

Meanwhile, a new animated version of Ghost in the Shell is currently being produced by publisher Kodansha and Japan-headquartered animation company Production I.G.