According to Wired, Steven Spielberg plans to put a ghost into a 3-D shell. Or, more accurately, Spielberg’s Dreamworks beat out Universal and Sony in a bidding war to secure rights to make a live-action version of the 1995 film GHOST IN THE SHELL, which was based on the novel by Shirow Masamune. Predating THE MATRIX, writer-director Mamoru Oshii’s film is an intriguing piece of action-packed cyberpunk, in which an elite team of cyborg-enhanced police track down an artificial intelligence that is seeking to incarnate itself into a body. Oshii followed up with 2004’s GHOST IN THE SHELL 2: INNOCENCE – which, if anything, topped its predecessor in terms of style and substance.
The prospect of an Americanized live-action 3-D remake is intriguing, but it is difficult to imagine how it could improve upon the original. Spielberg’s more recent “serious” sci-fi films (A.I. and MINORITY REPORT) have tended to be heavy-handed and even trite. A GHOST IN THE SHELL remake would need to fire on all cylinders, supplying both the action and the intellect.