New Hamptons mom and bride Scarlett Johansson will play the lead role in a live adaptation of Masamune Shirow‘s classic manga and anime franchise Ghost in the Shell.
The deal, reported by Variety on Monday, January 5, confirms what had been speculated since Johansson was offered the part in October. Margot Robbie was the first actress to be considered.
With her roles as Black Widow in Marvel’s Iron Man, Avengers and Captain America films, and as the titular character in Luc Besson‘s action thriller Lucy, Johansson should be perfectly suited (outside of her Caucasian features) to play Major Motoko Kusanagi, a sexy, often scantily clad badass cyborg and squad leader of Public Security Section 9, a special Japanese police force. “The Major,” as she’s called by fans, has strength, fighting prowess, a sharp intellect and strong detective and hacking skills. Along with battling her enemies, the Major’s greatest struggle is internal—as the title suggests, she is wrestling with the notion of her humanity and whether it exists at all.
Live action rights to Ghost in the Shell were picked up by East Hampton resident and super director Steven Spielberg (a huge fan of the original material) for Dreamworks in 2008, and Avi Arad and Steven Paul are now producing the film for him, while Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman) directs. William Wheeler is credited with the screenplay and Mark Sourian is the film’s executive producer, Variety reports.
Just as voracious Marvel Comics fans will dissect every detail of films about their favorite characters—Johansson got their stamp of approval, by the way—”otaku” fans of Ghost in the Shell will expect nothing less than perfection in this live action version of their beloved, seminal anime. Let’s hope ScarJo can hit another one out of the park.
At the very least, most fan boys should enjoy seeing her don the Major’s many risque costumes, including regular appearances of her birthday suit, with a few wires and cables.
See the Major in action below!