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Live-Action Ghost in the Shell Filming Spotted in Hong Kong

posted on by Karen Ressler
Scarlett Johansson, Pilou Asbæk photographed in costume

Hong Kong news source hk01 reported on Wednesday that the cast and crew of the live-action Ghost in the Shell film has been spotted filming in Hong Kong. The website posted photos (below) of star Scarlett Johansson and her costar Pilou Asbæk. The South China Morning Post posted additional photos of Johansson in her character's bomber jacket.

The Ghost in the Shell film is planned for an American release on March 31, 2017.

The studios shared a synopsis with the first image of lead actress Johansson (The Avengers, Lucy, Lost in Translation) as the Major (pictured below left) last month:

Based on the internationally-acclaimed sci-fi property, Ghost in the Shell follows the Major, a special ops, one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid, who leads the elite task force Section 9. Devoted to stopping the most dangerous criminals and extremists, Section 9 is faced with an enemy whose singular goal is to wipe out Hanka Robotic's advancements in cyber technology.

In addition to Johansson, Asbæk (Lucy) will play Batou. Michael Pitt (Boardwalk Empire) will play the Laughing Man. Director, comedian, and actor Beat Takeshi (also known as Takeshi Kitano) plays the Public Security Section 9 founder and chief Daisuke Aramaki.

French actress Juliette Binoche (2014's Godzilla, The English Patient, Chocolat) will play Dr. Ouelet, and Kaori Momoi (Sukiyaki Western Django, Memoirs of a Geisha, Helter Skelter) and Rila Fukushima (The Wolverine) will also have roles in the film. The actors for the other Section 9 task force members include: Chin Han (Independence Day: Resurgence), Danusia Samal (Tyrant), Lasarus Ratuere (Terra Nova), Yutaka Izumihara (Unbroken), and Tuwanda Manyimo (The Rover).

Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman) signed on to direct the film. Jonathan Herman (Straight Outta Compton) reworked the earlier drafts of the script written by William Wheeler (Hoax, The Reluctant Fundamentalist) and Jamie Moss (Street Kings). Weta Workshop and its co-founder Richard Taylor are working on the film. Deadline reported last year that Johansson was offered US$10 million for the lead role.

Additional staff members include cinematographer Jess Hall (The Spectacular Now, editor Neil Smith (Snow White and the Huntsman), production designer Jan Roelfs (Fast & Furious 6), and costume designers Kurt Swanson and Bart Mueller (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay).

Dreamworks and Paramount are co-financing and co-producing the film. Paramount Pictures is the film's new distributor, after Dreamworks ended its distribution deal with Walt Disney Pictures. Principal photography began in Wellington, New Zealand in January.

The anime studio Production I.G pitched the rights for Masamune Shirow's original cyber-police manga on behalf of the manga's publisher Kodansha in 2007, and DreamWorks acquired the live-action film rights in 2008. Ari Arad (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance), Avi Arad (formerly of Marvel Studios as well as of the Spider-Man and X-Men movie franchises), and Seaside Entertainment's Steven Paul (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance) are producing. The executive producers include Michael Costigan (Prometheus), Jeffrey Silver (Edge Of Tomorrow, 300), Tetsu Fujimura (Tekken), and Production I.G founder and head Mitsuhisa Ishikawa.

Source: HK Magazine

Update: Typo omitting actor name fixed. Thanks, Videogamep and Kougeru.


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