Despite a superstar lead, a license considered legendary in the anime world, and some serious marketing muscle, Ghost in the Shell hasn’t been doing well in theaters. Now, sources are telling Deadline that the Scarlett Johansson-fueled cyberpunk flick is set to lose $60 million at the box office even after global sales.
The sources have projected the film at $200 million, with $50 million of that in the states and $150 million from foreign markets. The film is estimated by some sources to have cost, between production and marketing, at least $250 million, if not even more.
Deadline notes that as of this week, the film has only pulled in $62 million worldwide.
Every tool for success, every sign of failure
Fans of the property and those watching the film through development have predicted a difficult life for the film once it saw release. Paramount did what it could.
A property like Ghost in the Shell necessarily requires a huge budget to bring to the big screen as a live-action feature. Really, that’s why it was done as animation in the first place. That need for a huge budget combined with the very niche appeal of even popular anime properties like Ghost in the Shell puts a lot of weight on them to succeed, and that means casting huge star power like Johansson even when it might not make sense for the story, the property, or the character.
The film released to mostly negative reviews from critics, and even fan response has been lukewarm at best, as the two hold 46 percent and 62 percent ratings on Rotten Tomatoes currently. As Deadline notes, compared stuff like Blade Runner, a major inspiration for the story, and The Matrix, a film heavily influenced by the original Ghost in the Shell anime film, it come across as cold and boring.
It’s possible it could find a second life outside theaters are movies like Speed Racer have in the past, but the picture painted right now is not encouraging.