Rupert Sanders recruited for Ghost in the Shell live-action
Rupert Sanders, director of Snow White and the Huntsman, has been chosen to direct the live-action adaptation of Ghost in the Shell. This project drifted around for sometime now since DreamWorks Studios bought the rights for the property in 2008. The script for the live-action adaptation will be written by William Wheeler (The Reluctant Fundamentalist, The Hoax).
Reflecting on Sanders' first featured film Snow White and the Huntsman received mixed reviews. Some pointed out the dark outlook of the original fairy tale, strong application of cinematic technology, and compelling feminist perspective to be the strong point of the movie. However, the movie's acting, pacing, and script seemed to the major problem among the audience, receiving varied ratings on IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, and Metacritic.
Due to this criticism of Snow White and the Huntsman, Ghost in the Shell fans are concerned that this film maybe the next Hollywood flop on live-action anime adaptation. However, it may be too soon to lose hope as Sanders’ other works have received well-acclaimed attention.
Sanders have worked on several video game commercials such as Halo 3 “Believe”, Xbox 360 “Joy”, and X-Men Origin Wolverine "Uncaged" commercials. His most famous one is the Halo 3 ODST commercial “The Life” (video above), which has been awarded with 2 Grand Prix at Cannes Festival in 2008. Compared to Snow White and the Huntsman, Ghost in the Shell as closer settings to Halo 3 ODST, besides a strong female lead.
The commercial portray a science fiction story with futuristic military-based theme that applies visionary and constructive technology, as well as the grimy and dark atmosphere of the unknown future. Although Halo is not exactly homogenous to Ghost in the Shell, this trailer demonstrates what Sanders can do with science fiction over fantasy settings. Putting aside how plot and acting may turn out, we can at least expect great cinematography and visual effects just by his commercials.
It may be too soon to judge where this Hollywood adaptation will end up being, as recent trend of Japanese media adaptation have received favorable expectation such as the Godzilla (2014) and Edge of Tomorrow (based on All You Need is Kill light novel). As more anime titles are in the works in Hollywood, who know the direction of live-adaptation cinematography is heading and anime's growing influence among modern media.
Image taken from deviantArt