The first trailer for Ghost in the Shell finally arrived at the end of last week but I feel as though I have been hearing about this film for months. Scarlett Johansson’s casting was the source of controversy as one of the most recent cases of casting a white actor in an Asian role. With Asian people being one of the least represented groups in film, I can’t help but be vexed by this oversight but there’s no getting past the fact that they certainly have grabbed people’s attention.
Johansson has this quality about her – utilised in her roles as Black Widow in the MCU and Ka in The Jungle Book – where she is seductively dangerous. You like her and you want to trust her but you also know that she could end your life. Based on this first trailer, it looks like her character here will be similar and in that respect, they couldn’t have cast a better person.
The visuals are stunning. CGI technology is constantly improving but I still wasn’t prepared for some of the scenes shown. The hope is that the story is as strong as the cinematography. I feel cautiously optimistic about this film but real sci-fi is hard to get right. This film is based on a widely successful Japanese franchise so the question isn’t whether the story is good enough but whether they will be able to adapt it well enough.
What did you think of the trailer? Does the white-washing controversy give you any reservations? Let me know in the comments.