March 2017 will see the release of several could-be blockbusters, spanning a relative wide range in genres. The lineup includes the hard-edged comic book adaptation Logan, the action/adventure (and King Kong movie franchise reboot) Kong: Skull Island, the big screen reboot of Saban’s own superhero franchise, Power Rangers, and a much buzzed about live-action musical version of Disney’s animated Beauty and the Beast. On top of all that, Paramount Pictures will be using that month to launch its live-action adaptation of the touchstone anime/manga property, Ghost in the Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson.
Ghost in the Shell takes place in a cyberpunk-style futuristic version of Hong Kong, wherein an advanced cybernetic special ops agent known simply as “The Major” (Johansson) leads the elite Section 9 team, in the ongoing battle to stop various criminals, terrorists and anti-robotics extremist from wreaking havoc on society. The initial teaser trailer released for the live-action Ghost in the Shell served as something of a tone-setter for the film, without diving too deep into the actual intricacies of the movie’s sci-fi setting. Paramount has now unveiled its official Super Bowl LI trailer for the Ghost in the Shell adaptation, further hinting at the larger narrative in the film.
You can now watch the Ghost in the Shell Super Bowl promo online (see the video above), ahead of the big game itself. The preview itself is as much of a teaser as the first theatrical trailer released for the movie; once again showing The Major in action and hinting at the character’s backstory in this version of the story. Boardwalk Empire alum Michael Pitt is playing the villain in the film but, like in the first trailer, the Super Bowl preview refrains from fully revealing his character’s appearance here (nor does it shed light on how he knows so much about The Major and her personal history).
Ghost in the Shell director Rupert Sanders looks to make good on his promise to deliver a visually faithful live-action rendition of the Ghost in the Shell universe in its previous hand-drawn and traditionally animated iterations, based on the footage from Sanders’ film adaptation that has been unveiled in public thus far. Whether or not Sanders’ Ghost in the Shell will have the same thematic substance of its predecessors is another matter, seeing as the director’s only other feature-length effort to date – Snow White and the Huntsman – is a movie that’s generally praised for its shiny surface, but criticized for being hollow at its (narrative) core.
Beyond that, as mentioned earlier, March 2017 is going to be a competitive month for franchise fare and Ghost in the Shell is by far the most niche of the intellectual properties hitting the big screen during that frame. Such movies as Beauty and the Beast and Power Rangers should still be going strong at the box office when Sanders’ film hits the scene; and with The Fate of the Furious launching two weeks later, it will be all the more difficult for Ghost in the Shell to “break-out” commercially, as a result. Don’t count out the Johansson-led tentpole just yet though, as the box office returns for Lucy proved that the A-lister’s non-Marvel vehicles are very much forces to be reckoned with, commercially.
Source: Paramount Pictures