Paramount Explains ‘Ghost in the Shell’ Teasers During Mr. Robot
Just a few weeks ago we got to feast our eyes on the first footage from Paramount’s live-action version of Ghost in the Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson. Instead of one two-minute long trailer, the studio released five short teaser trailers, each consisting of a mysterious segment from the film’s complex storyline. But besides fans of the acclaimed manga, most were probably a little confused by the footage. There have already been a couple great images released over the past few months that mostly showed off the design of Johansson’s character known as The Major. We won’t go into the whole whitewashing controversy that still surrounds her casting right now because there are other matters to discuss.
Whether or not if you gained anything from what the teasers offered, the manner in which the five clips were presented is another interesting topic. As both marketing itself and the variety of strategies that are being used to present it have greatly increased over the last decade, being able to predict how a studio will introduce the first details about an upcoming film to the public is getting harder to do. And since the story of Ghost in the Shell centers around on technology and corruption, it makes sense for the film’s marketing to emblazon itself with a style that communicates those themes.
However, for those of us still asking questions (for one being the release date of the next teaser footage), Paramount has disclosed the reasoning behind the teasers’ uncommon presentation and release placement. In an interview with Deadline, Paramount president of worldwide distribution and marketing Megan Colligan revealed that “[‘Ghost in the Shell’ is] a movie about glitches and technology, and that fits well thematically with Mr. Robot.” For anyone who didn’t catch the fantastic Primetime Emmy Awards show back in mid-September, USA’s acclaimed Mr. Robot series won big time.
“The great thing about season premieres and season finales is that they’re like live sporting events: People want to watch them in real time. Because of the social media explosion, there’s a fear of missing out or having a plot detail spoiled. We knew with the Mr. Robot finale we’d get that extra boost of people who would be sharing on social.”
According to Colligan, the so-called “glitches” are an important part of the Ghost in the Shell storyline. Therefore, the film’s unusual marketing style seems that much more appropriate.
“Ghost in the Shell is so original in its own right that it had to have a special execution to kick it off. We needed a launch that was as unique and original as the property itself. You’ll soon learn about the glitch; it’s one of the most important parts of the film’s storytelling. It was important to present the earliest advertising for this film as a glitch instead of something more traditional.”
Regardless of the reasoning behind it, Ghost in the Shell still looks incredible. Since the film doesn’t hit theaters until next March, there’s plenty of time for Paramount to release some more footage for it. What will be interesting to see is how closely this live-action version will stay to the source material. Also, the film has a lot to live up to when you look at the multiple Ghost in the Shell anime movies that have come before it. But don’t worry, it shouldn’t disappoint.
Ghost in the Shell opens in U.S. theaters on March 31, 2017.