Ghost in the Shell Producer Reveals True Cost of the 1995 Anime

The iconic Ghost in the Shell is a 1995 anime film long considered to be one of the best in the medium. It was directed by Mamoru Oshii. The project revolves around Motoko Kusanagi, a cyborg security agent who tracks down a mysterious hacker known as the Puppet Master. A subject related to the motion picture that has been debated is the budget. Recently, the producer for the title confirmed how much it cost to make.

A Twitter discussion of the movie’s budget occurred between a Japanese university professor named Renato Rivera Rusca and translator ehoba. Ghost in the Shell‘s producer Shigeru Watanabe joined the conversation by revealing the true cost to be 330 million yen. For those who do not know, that number is equal to about $3 million in the United States. While the budget may be considered small by today’s standards, that by no means affect the quality of the motion picture. There are multiple animated films released in the 21st century costing tens of millions of dollars. Many of those projects do not have near the critical or audience acclaim as the 1995 project.

The announcement is different from the Japanese VHS box art. Writing on that particular product claimed the budget was 600 million yen. However, it should be noted that the number likely refers to the yen spent on production, advertising, and other associated costs. One possible reason for the over-exaggeration has to do with the economy. The release date came soon after the Bubble Economy burst.

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Watanabe also explained how the production budget for Patlabor 2: The Movie was 220 million yen, which was less than Ghost in the Shell. This information contrasts with a quote from a 2020 Oshii interview that said the latter was cheaper to create than the former. Watanabe expressed how he has records from that time to confirm his information is accurate.

As previously mentioned, Ghost in the Shell is widely considered to be one of the best anime movies of all time. Additionally, many believe it to be one of the best sci fi films as well. On Rotten Tomatoes, a critical consensus reads, “A stunning feat of modern animation, Ghost in the Shell offers a thoughtful, complex treat for anime fans, as well as a perfect introduction for viewers new to the medium.” Multiple directors have talked about how the anime inspired some of their works. The 1999 classic The Matrix, which now has an ongoing movie series, is said to be heavily inspired by the project.

The information is not surprising, as both motion pictures are science fiction works that feature philosophical themes. James Cameron, who is no stranger to science fiction, called the Japanese feature “the first truly adult animation film to reach a level of literary and visual excellence.” Ghost in the Shell went on to launch an entertainment franchise. A beloved television show called Ghost in the Shell: Standalone Complex premiered. Some fans like the series more than the first movie. A sequel, called Ghost in the Shell: Innocence came out in 2004. Years later, in 2015, a third installment in the series, named Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie was released. In 2017, a live action adaptation of the original, starring Scarlett Johansson, debuted. However, that project was critically panned.

This news comes to us from Crunchyroll.

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