HomeBlogsGhost In The Shell promo backfires: I am ... laughing

Ghost In The Shell promo backfires: I am … laughing

Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johannson is made to look more Asian in Ghost in the Shell

By Ed Diokno
Views from the Edge

This is hilarious! At the risk of creating more buzz for the movie Ghost In The Shell, I had to share how the movie’s ad campaign backfired. Instead of promoting the film, it provided reasons not to go see it.

Ghost In the Shell‘s official Twitter just tweeted out a new video for fans, along with a viral website. The video shows footage from the film, with the lines, “I am hunted. I am the hunter. I am fearless. I am coming for them. I am Major.” You can go to a new website, IAmMajor.me, and upload who you are along with your picture to post on your social media accounts.

RELATED: Asian Americans decry whitewashing

The “I am Major,” campaign refers to Major Motoko Kusanagi,  the lead character in the manga hit, In the film, Scarlett Johansson plays the lead character, which (as you can tell by the name) was originally conceived as a Japanese character.

Netizens – you gotta love them – took the opportunity to make a strong statement about their opposition to the practice of whitewashing characters of color so that White actors can take over the role.

Here are some of their creative responses.


Ghost in the Shell is not the first to practice whitewashing, and sadly, it probably won’t be the last. The “I Am Major” campaign was used to criticize another TV show, Iron Fist, that appropriates Asian culture and cast a White actor in the main role., and The Great Wall starring White savior Matt Damon even though it was shot in China.


No matter how you try to defend why an actor like Johansson should play the lead in a film like Ghost in the Shell, you can’t deny the impact it will have on audiences.

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