“Ghost in the Shell” had everything: good campaign marketing, a famous name as main character, an action-packed story and extremely well-done special effects. However, it only made about $19 million domestically, in its opening weekend. It seems like not even the fact that it had Scarlet Johansson in it did not help the movie from failing at the box office. Still, why did this happen? There are a number of reasons.
“Ghost in the Shell” fails
Since it was first announced, the movie was surrounded by controversy, especially regarding what is now called ‘whitewashing”. Fans of the Japanese manga series on which it was based accused the producers of hiring a Caucasian actress just for money. Scarlett Johansson is starring as some kind of cyber-human warrior who begins a journey to find the truth about her life and fate. It may sound intriguing and it really is. However, it only made $19 million domestically, in its first weekend. It was overshadowed by a rather unexpected movie. Fox/DreamWorks Animation’s “Boss Baby” had a $49 million debut. In its third week, “Beauty and the Beast” kept on making waves with $47,5 million.
The reason why
According to some experts, “Ghost in the Shell” suffered from a lot of perspectives. Firstly, critics hit it with everything they had, sometimes undeserving, all because of the initial controversy regarding the main actress. Secondly, the North American public is not so familiar with the original Japanese series and maybe they found it strange.
As for the international market, the movie opened in 53 countries and it did a little bit better, coming in second. It made $40,1 million and was the number one movie over the weekend in 11 countries. On Friday, the “Ghost in the Shell” will open in Japan and China. So, there is a big chance that it will do very well there, especially considering that the original manga comes from that area. However, even like this, the movie cost $110 million to make. If the situation will not drastically change, it might end up in the losing category.
All in all, it seems like controversies are still affecting movies and entertainment in general. We will see what the producers’ reaction will be and how will they explain the fact that “Ghost in the Shell” failed at the Box Office.
Image source: arstechnica