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Why are people so upset about ScarJo? She is a HUGE action star. Her name alone will fill seats in the theater. I would much rather they keep ScarJo and have a big success with this franchise than use a less known asian actress and risk the movie having a bad launch dooming the franchise.
People are upset because they took a thoroughly Japanese story set in Japan told through Japanese characters and mainly cast non-Japanese actors without even bothering to change the characters' names. They could have adapted the Laughing Man story by setting it in an alternate universe. There even is precedent within Ghost in the Shell lore, as the series and movies only share characters and themes.
There is also the question that if the filmakers can't even be arsed to remain faithful to the original in casting, how can they faithfully adapt the rest of the material in its complexity to a live-action version?
Nothing against Johansson; she's good, as are a lot of the other actors. But this white-washing nonsense has to stop. I'm getting tired of always seeing the same type of face on the screen. Rinko Kikuchi would have been a better choice for the role of Major Kusanagi, for example.
As for financial success: I couldn't care less. The franchise is not doomed; Arise just came out last year. It wasn't as good as Stand Alone Complex, but good enough.