Inktober Redux 2022 - Day 07 - Rinko Kikuchi, Major Motoko Kusanagi
Day 7 - Ghost in the Shell, 2017 - Scarlett Johansson was cast in the role of Major Motoko Kusanagi. The perception stateside was negative compared to oversees as according to Justin Charity of Ringer, "your average Japanese citizen's outlook on diversity is much less influenced by pluralism than the outlooks of many Asian Americans, who live in a country where popular culture rarely represents them well, if at all. Hence, many Japanese Americans may find Johansson's casting in a Ghost in the Shell movie distressing, while native Japanese observers make nothing of it.” Casting for this film needed a more nuanced approach and understanding of current audiences. The film was visually stunning, but a dud in its reception, whether or not you thought the storyline in of itself was successful. WHAT IF the filmmakers instead took the opportunity and cast a Japanese actress in the lead? Instead of Johansen, Rinko Kikuchi had been cast as Major? Kikuchi had some pretty good bona fides in action/sci fi with projects such as Pacific Rim, 47 Ronin and Tokyo Vice. Maybe the film would have had a warmer reception.