Ghost in the Shell: first look at Scarlett Johansson in live-action adaptation of classic manga

Johansson will star as a human-cyborg hybrid in the live-action adaptation of the classic manga series of the same name

Clarisse Loughrey
Thursday 14 April 2016 14:10
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Scarlett Johansson is finally beginning to establish herself as an action star far beyond the confines of Marvel's Black Widow.

Following the $400M worldwide gross of Luc Besson's Lucy, Johansson now tackles a classic of the manga world; a live-action adaptation of Masamune Shirow's iconic manga Ghost in the Shell. Here, she plays the Major: a special ops, uniquely fashioned human-cyborg hybrid who leads the elite task force Section 9.

Her job, to lead her unit in the elimination of the most dangerous threats to society; which sees her tested when she must face off against an enemy whose only goal is to destroy the cybernetic technology which saved her life.

Ghost in the Shell will have a major issue in addressing the controversy of Johansson's casting as a clearly Japanese character, Major Motoko Kusanagi; with the film already receiving a fairly massive backlash under accusations of whitewashing.

The production does at least have Mitsuhisa Ishikawa, whose animation studio Production I.G. was behind the Japanese animated Ghost in the Shell film; hopefully, his presence will at least elsewhere ensure some level of faithfulness to the manga's world.

Snow White and the Huntsman's Rupert Sanders is directing, with filming taking place in Wellington, New Zealand.

Ghost in the Shell hits UK cinemas 31 March 2017.

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