Ghost in the Shell Promotion Backfires

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One final marketing stunt by Paramount Pictures in order to promote the highly controversial live action Ghost in the Shell movie has seemingly backfired as the internet has taken the opportunity to troll the whitewashed production, an unsurprising turn of events considering how loud the negative criticism has been.

A special image generation website was launched (originally introduced by a 30-second promotional ad featuring non-Asian Scarlett Johansson) where visitors could upload their own image and input some text above the phrase “I Am Major”, leading to some rather humorous results (with some refreshingly opting to stray away from the whole whitewashing concept).

The aforementioned promotional ad:

Some of the graphics that visitors have produced using the website:

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Those still somehow interested in seeing the film can watch Ghost in the Shell in theaters come March 31st.

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211 Comments

  • What’s really funny about this is that most Japanese audiences don’t actually care. Western movies and actors/celebrities have been arguably more popular in Japan than their own for decades. This is not a problem to them. Most of the people raising hell over this are white people who think that they have the God-given right to get offended and speak for a certain group that they’re not a part of, and whose actual views they have no real understanding of.

    What’s even funnier is that the GitS series has a lot more wiggle room than most anime/manga adaptations to make these Hollywood decisions completely justified. First off: the Major wasn’t even given a confirmed nationality to begin with, and the 95′ movie wasn’t even meant to be based in Japan. Even “Kusanagi Motoko” has been outright confirmed to only be a code name, not her given name, so that can’t be used as an argument. Even if it was, the Major’s a cyborg with a completely synthetic body. That body could have the physical features of anyone from any nationality instead of just being based on the owner’s original body, or anyone from their place of birth.

  • I know everyone have different opinions, but I think it’s generally a fact that white people are generally more attractive. I.e. non-white people should consider to stop reproducing and let white people naturally spread all over the world, and everyone is happy.

    Just joking of course. Or do I…

  • I pretty much expect Hollywood to fuck up every Japanese production they try to westernise, so no real surprise when Hollywood went full on racist with the casting of GitS. There just is no way I can believe that there weren’t plenty of English speaking actresses and actors of Asian lineage available to cast this movie properly.

  • I thought most people here would be conflicted against this here. Seems most people here, despite saying racist things, dont beleive theres any racial discrimination anymore. This place hats so-called SJWs but this is one of those very “SJW” internet things that people here tend to bash all the time. Minority’s should be properly represented in the media? Trump’s America won’t have any of that “social justice politically correct nonsense”, right? right??

  • if they wanted to REALLY be true to the original story, they should have found a full conversion cyborg to play the Major. After all the Major was really just a brain in a female shaped cybernetic body.

  • I can count the Japanese Actors that can act on 2 Hands and none of them would star in a Anime adaption, let’s face if Japan had done this adaption most roles would be filled with talentless Idols who couldn’t act if their life depended on it as usual.

  • I don’t understand the whole anger thing….. Even in the anime Ghost in the shell Motoko looked white AF, Secondly its a robot body with a brain…. do these people not read or even know the source material ?

  • lol!! Rinko who? all those butthurts saying whitewashing and race etc.. blabla bullshit, Scarlet is the best for the role in terms of acting and especially money, no one would sell tickets like Scarlet does, much less that Rinko that no one knows, Famous = ticket sales = money, simple, no one in Hollywood cares about race, if an Asian actress was the most famous she would be used in everything like Lucy Liu was when she did Kill Bill

  • All this complaining about “whitewashing” in the live-action GitS is just salty PC American otaku. Meanwhile, nobody is complaining about Japanese film producers casting Japanese people in roles for ostensibly Caucasian characters in anime like Fullmetal Alchemist or Attack on Titan. Why is it only “politically incorrect” when American producers engage in racially-inaccurate casting?

    The Japanese by and large don’t seem to care about racially-accurate portrayals of characters. Hell, even anime & manga producers usually don’t care about racially-accurate portrayals of their characters, and they have a word for this: mukokuseki. So, why do so many Americans insist that GitS have a 100% Japanese cast?

  • Um… why are we all wasting our rage meters on a movie no one will even remember in like a couple months from now anyway?

    Remember that Kite movie Hollywood made? Yeah you probably forgot all about it cause it was shit so no one cared and that’s basically what’s gonna happen to this movie.

  • Oh, don’t remain all upset about this, folks.

    Because I don’t recall all this social rant and protest against both Asian and Asian-American cultures’ constant appeal to “whiteness preference.”

    You know, all the anime, Japanese games, and live-action series that often emulates white appearance, white Western culture, and often tends to kisses white society’s ass (seriously, even in Street Fighter, just about all the white American/European folks are protagonists and allies to the Japanese characters, while Balrog (orig. M. Bison) was long cast as an unflattering belligerent dumb-oaf black protagonist)?

    You know, like how South Korea still sees issues like appliances TV advertisements featuring black men being put into the washer, just to come out “clean” as a sparking whiter Korean man?

    You know, like why Japan still doesn’t really get the concept of how to portray black/brown characters in animation without dipping into some questionable themes (granted, Japan’s culturally-isolated from race relation issues, which is half the problem)?

    You know, like how artificially-pinkened nipples are a big trend in Korea, China, and Japan, and why young Asian people are seeing increasingly more epicanthal fold surgery to make eyes less “Asian”?

    You know, like why the most common (and wealthiest) interracial pairing in America and Europe is of white/Asian couples (particularly, white men and Asian women), because the exoticism and wealth gets sold under the guise of diversification, and “love is love” is all that matters, despite the underlying theme of exoticism and marrying for wealth both mutually being the chief source of the growing trend.

    You know, like how Asian populations in Western society tend to see a trend as “honorary white” when available, and “people of color” when convenient–in ways no other darker minority knows?

    Don’t get mad now that it’s being inverted again by Hollywood. If you didn’t whine about the whiteness preferences on the other side of the issue, no sense staying all mad because Hollywood chose Scarlett Johansson to play Motoko, instead of Rinko Kikuchi, which would’ve been a culturally-accurate choice but a ridiculous choice in casting.

    Rinko is authentically Japanese, but she’s no bombshell (not saying she’s unattractive–she’s just no Scarlett Johansson, in terms of curves). The whole GitS series pretty much hinges around Motoko being a constant bombshell. Rinko has absolutely no ass and no tits to speak of.

    Rinko’s also still not quite the action-movie blockbuster draw as “ScarJo” is–not singularly as the lead role, anyways. She just misses on all marks EXCEPT actually being Japanese. This is a crude and shallow way to look at it, and I know how “sexist” and “misogynistic” this sounds, but then again, sex appeal IS shamelessly half the series’ whole draw. If you’re going to be frank about sex appeal, you might as well be upfront about it.

    In short, this whole situation sucks. It doesn’t do Asian society no favors, but it’s not as if Asian society didn’t help contribute to the effects of “whiteness preference.” There SHOULD be more Asian stars out there, but ironically, they’d just look like Western society (unless we’re talking about martial arts movies, because there’s where the exotic flair benefits).

    Ultimately, most folks protesting and mocking are probably still gonna go see the movie, anyways, because, at the end of the day, the world prefers distraction over truth. This too shall pass. Even if it’s passing as Asian.

    #GhostInTheShell #GitS #ScarJo #race #America #Asia #society #LifeSucks

  • Honestly I know Appleseed isn’t as popular as GITS but come on! That could’ve been easily adapted to the west! Why climb a mountain with a lit TNT when you can trek with managable equipment?

  • I don’t blame the white cast. When someone offers you a job with a huge paycheck, you take both. I blame the studio dick, casting agent, or whoever decided to reach out to Caucasian actors/actresses instead of Asian actors/actresses.

    • Unless it’s Japanese, you’re being racist and stereotyping as “all Asians look the same”… Good job complaining about whitewashing and suggesting racism as a better option…

        • I look at myself in the mirror and see very few things I have in common with a Japanese (I’m a Singaporean Chinese), beyond hair colour and skin tone.

          Just because you weren’t paying attention to an Oriental’s facial features (seriously, Asians could also mean Arabs, Indians, Indo-Asians and even Siberians, so calling us Orientals is probably more accurate) doesn’t mean there aren’t differences you couldn’t spot at a glance.

  • There’s 7*10^27 atoms in me, if you took each one and wrote “hate” one hundred times on each sub-atomic particles of each atom you would even reach one/one hundredth of the hate I feel for these damn live action remakes taking animation work away from people like me.
    Hate! HATE! HATE!!

    • That’s because the model of her robotic body is a Caucasian type, one of the most popular models in order for her to blend into society.

      In other words The Major is white. Always has been. Always will be. Batou is also white, and is probably French. The actor playing him is Danish, but well no one really knows where Batou came from afaik, so whatever.

      IIRC Kuze also uses a Caucasian model, though his face is sculpted and is probably a generic Caucasian face. He had a human body as a child and was Japanese, however Kuze is white (iirc).

      Since The Major never really had a human body that she can remember, she doesn’t really identify as any particular race. If anything she probably identifies as white, since that’s what she currently is.

      AFAIK those are the only white characters in the movie, and they were all white to begin with. Whitewashing does suck, but I don’t see it happening here.

      • What is astablished in the series fellas is that Motoko Kusanagi is Nom De Guerre of a woman who lost her body and family as result of a planecrash at a young age. It’s not stated if she was traveling to or from Japan and her original ethnic background is never stated.

        We do know that she was orphaned in Japan and probably raised by state organs. Later on joined military and raised through the ranks to spook ops. WWIV veteran. Now working for domestic counter intelligence alphabet agency.

        In japan that is being flooded by refugees and dirt poor people from post limited scope nuclear war earth.

        What is more surprising that these people claim that they’re familiar with the series yet are absolutely clueless or diseganeous about these factoids.

        That and that everybody has a problem with Major who is a full body cyborg of questionable ethnicity. But nobody has an issue with Ishikawa being black even though lore wise he’s probably least modded of the Section 9 after Togusa. Boma is apperently also black in this new movie and nowhere is it indicated that he’s moded to same level as either Motoko or Batou.

    • Who gives a shit?

      Any anime-fan worth their salt knows that any live action adaption is going to suck monkey balls – no matter the race of the actors (because the Japanese live action movie adaptions sure as hell aren’t good).

      Live action adaptions are only good for pointing and laughing – save for Jackie Chan’s City Hunter (with the epic Street Fighter 2 spoof).

      The only people who cares about “OMG WHITEWASHING!!!” are retarded SJWs trying to score “Look at me, I’m such a good, progressive, anti-racist person!!!”-points.

  • Good fucking God those people are fucking stupid. bitch bitch bitch, whine whine whine. With none of them realizing (or just intentionally ignoring inconvenient facts that don’t fit their annoying circle-jerk narrative) that the entire reasons Motoko isn’t played by a Japanese woman are:

    1. China wouldn’t turn out to watch a movie with a Japanese lead actress
    2. Hollywood makes more money from Chinese sales than they do anywhere else for these types of films
    3. Johansson was simply a better choice (look, acting skill, etc.) than anyone else who was offered/tested.

    They really want to make change in Hollywood? Then either make them more cash than China does, or stop holding the lid down on all the fucking “bigwigs” who get away hourly with raping child actors/actresses.

    Mother fucking pussies…never will though. Fuck, they delete wake-up comments by people with an actual brain who enter their safe-space echo chambers & remind them of the inconvenient truths of life.

    • @22:13
      “Then either make them more cash than China does”
      We’re trying to baby, we’re trying. We need more Trumps elected elsewhere in the world to put a halt to this massive shift of wealth from the west to China. *remembers the days before everything was Made in China*

    • She did not get the role because of her acting skill, partially her looks but she really got the role because for some god only knows reason she’s the most popular female action star in hollywood. Also 95% of the male population seem to have a total boner for her. Lastly she seems to be totally fine with doing nude scenes as well.

      She puts asses in seats essentially.

      Personally I have no problem with her race wise, Makoto was always a bit racially ambiguous due to the whole cyborg thing. No I just don’t like her as an actress at all.

      Also you gotta laugh at the SJWs for playing weebs, as if that would actually give them any credibility.

  • i am conflicted by this. i want the movie to be good cause good movies are a good thing. but if this white washing campaign single handedly tanked the movie then it wouldnt be the worst thing in the world.

  • No she’s not Major and she’ll never be, she’s just white trash shitty actress, who should make at most porn carrier but thanks to blowing cocks left and right she end up where she is.

  • mrwasabihead says:

    …just watched the trailer.
    I’ve seen the anime, something like, 10 times.
    And I don’t remember ANYTHING happening in the anime that follows what seems to be the story line in the live action film.
    I’ve seen both OVA’s and if I remember correctly the first OVA was incredible. The story line was indeed thought provoking to say the least.
    These were very good stories, GITS.
    I REALLY hope Hollywood doesn’t fuck this up.
    If they do even money might not be enough to get a good mangaka to give up his/her creations. I wouldn’t want my creations bastardized by Hollyweird. Would YOU?!!

    • If you’ve seen both OVAs… you’ve missed one (two if you wanna count the remake of the first one). Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie ties this live action in to the original series, kind of. Yes it does happen after Arise, but the storyline there I think leads to what is being portrayed in the new live action movie.

      as for the “whitewashing” of the movie… a quick check of IMDB shows a large number of Asian actors playing Asian roles. Aramaki, Togusa, Saito, and a bunch of non-primaries. But… Section 9/Major’s group were international, or at least that was heavily implied in the series. I don’t think the Major had to be Japanese, but I do think Scarlett isn’t really right for the part.

      Still gonna go see it though, check out all the behind the scenes stuff on youtube, look for Tested with Adam Savage.

  • I think it looks alright to be honest. Looks like they made a lot of effort trying to be mostly faithful (for a hollywood movie). I say wait and give it a chance at least. It’s no Dragonball Eveolution anyway.

    • Which is why it’s bad. No one would sit down and talk about one subject with one side only remembering their first impression of it. It makes things difficult as you want them to get into the franchise and showcase its good points while not alienating them by appearing like a horny nerd.

      • Horny nerd? I consider that very misinformed. But there’s some things that show well what the movie is about. That doll-thing for example, it’s like a good part of the movie is based on it, so how long it’s going to show up in the movie?

  • I just wished someone would tell the “injustice” demographic that they’re targeting with that “they made me, but they dont own me” bullcrap, that shirow masamune, the series creator, draws and writes gang bang and rape ero-manga, sonthat the whole movie could backfire on them.

    • I assume you haven’t seen Rurouni Kenshin. The live-action is GREAT, and the characters look spot-on.
      I’ve only watched the first movie, however, so I don’t know how the sequels hold up.
      I also wanted to start the anime bur Netflix doesn’t have audio in my language and the episodes are removed from YouTube (in case it isn’t clear, I wanted to watch it via a site which goes from an episode to the next one automatically).

      • Duh. It’s a god damn adaptation of a series about SAMURAI; you’re gonna hold THAT up? Fuck you. I take it you didn’t even watch Edge of Tomorrow when you look at live action adaptation.

        Clearly you’re not one to debate.

  • The fact that she doesn’t look Asian could have been used to further the major’s identity crisis in fact that is what ghost in the shell is all about, but unfortunately they will probably dumb it down because we have to for the general population to be even able to consume it on a meaningful level. I also stand with the creator when he says about his work that race is unimportant because cyborg people who say otherwise are just pushing an agenda

    • > says about his work that race is unimportant

      What? Just because you are a cyborg, your brain and mentality stay whatever they were originally.
      You dont get an AI brain.

      Oh and by the way, your mind and life experience define your identity.
      I personally think this whole problem of interchangeable bodies is incredibly forced.

        • Not from birth but from a young age. Besides past the first movie she isn’t even human anymore when it comes to her brain either.

          Unless you want to cast a server room to play major.

      • to be honest they’re in an existencial crisis. they DO have a partial artificial brain and it’s impossible to distinguish between artificial inputs and natural perception, as seen in the laughing man case.
        When we get this far, a CyberBrain psychosis will be pretty easy to contract when you fear you’re just a slap of meat in a jar on a shelf.

  • Honestly, I don’t know why they bothered casting Scarlet. I feel like the mass market doesn’t care about Ghost in the Shell, and casting a popular Asian actress would probably be a better business decision, especially for the global market. China, South Korea, and Japan are big markets for US Movies, and some Asian actress famous in that region would be really helpful for marketing.

    I feel like Scarlet Johannesen is one of the most overrated actresses ever, and that they even should’ve gotten someone more “Russian” feeling for Black Widow.

    • Why is this matter? Why the hell we even need a live action movie based on anime in the first place? It would be cringy as fuck, just remember assasins creed movie or all of the Uwe Boll “masterpieces”. People are already fine with the fact that there would be a shitty gits movie. Next step would be full acceptance of it and paying for the tickets, the movie would be a huge success provoking holywood to create even more crap like that to feed the shit eaters.

      • exactly, there is already a perfetly good GitS movie… if people are too closed minded that they can only watch a film if its in english and made in hollywood with white actors then its their loss, they can go to hell.

    • Allegedly Rinko doesn’t speak English all that well. Though they could’ve dubbed her over if that’s the case, the real problem is that she isn’t exactly the box office magnet.

      • the problem with that argument (and i’m not trying to get at you, what you said is what all these casting directors are repeating, so its worth addressing) is that the Hollywood environment right now, NO ONE is a “box office magnet”.
        the idea isn’t even relevant anymore.

        right now the business is all about franchise marketing. the franchise is the box-office magnet, not the actors.
        the biggest stars in recent years have been total nobodies, but they fronted a new franchise.
        and all the career revivals in recent years haven’t been off some key career-defining actor-specific role, its been thanks to a franchise with major studio backing.

        hell, even ScarJo’s own career wouldn’t even be going anywhere right now if she hadn’t gotten an action star career reboot thanks to a Marvel franchise.
        she literally wouldn’t be getting THIS VERY ROLE if she hadn’t gotten an action star career reboot thanks to a Marvel franchise.

        so what that means is this idea that they NEEDED a name actress is absolute bull.

        assuming the GitS franchise was strong enough in America to sell in the first place (by no means a guarantee), they literally could have used anyone (ScarJo, some random brand new unknown white actress, an asian actress), and could have sold the movie just as well.

        because they sell the franchise now, the individual actors are meaningless (as evidenced by the long line of supposed movie-selling “A-List” actors and actresses whose movies all bomb outside of that recent franchise that made them relevant again)

  • Omg, this people are cringe as fuck. You know what? I never wished as much luck for a movie as much as I wish for this one. I hope ScarJo will outdo herself and the movie will be fucking awesome… but even that… even a 10/10 amazing movie wouldn’t satisfy the sjw trash nor the weebs

    • Morons and idiots that whine and moan and complain like this make me ashamed to BE an American. So the only correction is not all of us Americans are full of crap. And I for one would love to see ScarJo play The Major.

      • @16:47
        So many other Americans would be pissed off that they have such a soft cock pussy as their countrymen. SJWs, weebs and retards stir up some crap and you feel “ashamed” to be American? You’re almost as bad as they are you cucked sack of shit.

      • I was generalizing just because most of the crap, complaints, sex censoring etc I see coming from Americans. Of course not all of you are the same. I know there is a lot of good people on your country. Go go go Scarlet! Can’t wait to see you as the major!

        • The reason why most shitwashing comes from USA is simply because they’re the largest market for almost anything. Just wait until the chinese actually have some money to spend and you’ll see then…

  • Rinko Kikuchi doesn’t look like The Major to me. The only similarity they share is a Japanese origin, of which The Major no longer retains any physical cues by the time of the Movie’s events.

    Really, dumbass Americans are only putting forward Rinko Kikuchi because “she’s Japanese”, and even then it’s because she’s the only Japanese actress dumbass American fans are currently aware of.

    Its extremely racist and insulting to reduce the measure of an actor’s capability to his/her race, but then again I don’t really expect dumbass Americans to do anything but that.