Live-Action Ghost in the Shell Project Signs Up Director Rupert Sanders
posted on by Jennifer Sherman
The American film production company DreamWorks has signed up Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman) to direct its planned live-action film adaptation of Masamune Shirow's Ghost in the Shell cyber-police manga. William Wheeler (Hoax, The Reluctant Fundamentalist) has written a new script for the project.
Jamie Moss (Street Kings, Last Man Home) was originally signed to script the film when Dreamworks announced its license in 2008. Dreamworks hired Shutter Island writer and executive producer Laeta Kalogridis to draft the film in 2009. She wrote in March 2010 that she would "turn in a draft in a few weeks." Kalogridis also reiterated in 2010 that her script for the live-action film would be based on Shirow's original manga and not Production I.G and Mamoru Oshii's animated movie adaptation.
Variety reported in 2008 that Universal and Sony also negotiated for the rights, which the Production I.G anime studio was pitching for the manga's original publisher Kodansha. What turned the dealmaking in DreamWorks' favor was co-founder Steven Spielberg's enthusiasm for the project. The entertainment trade newspaper quotes the acclaimed director and producer: "Ghost in the Shell is one of my favorite stories. It's a genre that has arrived, and we enthusiastically welcome it to DreamWorks."
Avi Arad (formerly of Marvel Studios as well as of the Spider-Man and X-Men movie franchises), Arad's son Ari, and Seaside Entertainment's Steven Paul brought the project to DreamWorks and will produce.
The American arm of the manga's original Japanese publisher Kodansha began reprinting the manga in 2009 after Dark Horse Comics had the license. Kodansha also launched two new manga series based on director Kenji Kamiyama's Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex television anime series that year. In addition to Oshii's two films and Kamiyama's two Stand Alone Complex television series and spinoff feature, the Shirow's manga also inspired the current Ghost in the Shell Arise prequel anime.
Image via IMDb