The iconic opening theme from the 1995 animated classic “Ghost in the Shell” has received a modern update courtesy of electro house musician Steve Aoki. The remix retains the striking, traditional vocals from the original theme, but eschews the pounding taiko drums in favor of a harsher, more electronic sound.
The opening “Ghost in the Shell” theme, “Making of a Cyborg,” was penned by Japanese composer Kenji Kawai, whose work has been featured in television, film and video games going as far back as 1986. The vocals heard in “Making of a Cyborg” are sung in Old Japanese, the oldest known stage of the Japanese language, which was widely used in the country until the eighth century. The vocals themselves are a wedding song sung to dispel evil influences.
Steve Aoki is an electro house musician who, in 2012, was the highest-grossing touring dance artist in North America. Aoki has released four Billboard-charting electro dance records since his first solo album, “Wonderland,” in 2012, which was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Dance/Electronica Album. He has collaborated with artists such as LMFAO, Iggy Azalea, Lil Jon and will.i.am.
The “Ghost in the Shell” anime was an adaptation of a manga series by the same name written by Masamune Shirow, which is the pen name adopted by artist Masanori Ota. In the film, police officer Motoko Kusanagi, otherwise known as The Major, works with the public-security agency Section 9 to track down a cyberterrorist named the Puppet Master who has been hacking into cyborgs and forcing them to commit crimes.
“Ghost in the Shell” imagines a world in which public servants and the rich can transfer their consciousness into humanoid cyborg bodies called ghosts. The idea that a person can effectively be hacked into, therefore, poses a serious security threat for both Section 9 and The Major.
The rights to adapt an American, live-action adaptation of “Ghost in the Shell” were originally acquired by DreamWorks and Steven Spielberg in 2008. Scarlett Johansson was cast as The Major in 2014 after Margot Robbie turned down the role in favor of playing Harley Quinn in 2016’s “Suicide Squad.” The film has courted controversy for its casting decisions.
Debuting in theaters on March 31, “Ghost in the Shell” is a production of Paramount Pictures directed by Rupert Sanders and starring Scarlett Johansson, Michael Pitt, Pilou Asbaek, Chin Han and Juliette Binoche.
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