The world is furious with Scarlett Johansson because of her new movie role.

A twitter-storm has erupted and enveloped Scarlett Johansson this week over her casting in the Hollywood remake of Japanese anime Ghost in the Shell.

On Thursday, the first visuals of Johansson playing cyborg policewoman Major Kusanagi hit the web to an onslaught of rumblings calling the film out for “white-washing” a Japanese anime character.

High-profile critics like that of actress Ming-Na Wen from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and comic-book writer Jon Tsuei took to social media to deplore the casting and reinforce the need for Asian actresses and actors to be the face of their own stories.

“Ghost in the Shell, while just one film, is a pillar in Asian media,” Tsui wrote.

“It’s not simply a sci-fi thriller … This casting is not only the erasure of Asian faces but a removal of the story from its core themes.”

Perhaps even more alarmingly, Screen Crush are alleging that Paramount and DreamWorks tested visual affects that endeavoured to make Johansson appear more Asian in the film.


It’s certainly not the first time the twitter-verse has voiced it’s discontent at the casting, with a petition created last last year calling for the dismissal of Johansson in the place of someone of Asian descent.

The petition questioned why the studio didn’t choose an ethnically appropriate actor as the film’s lead, while lamenting the lack of diversity on the big screen.

“The industry is already unfriendly to Asian actors without roles in major films being changed to exclude them. One recent survey found that in 2013, Asian characters made up only 4.4% of speaking roles in top-grossing Hollywood films,” the petition wrote.

For many, the film’s casting does not stand alone but is indicative of a much larger and much more insidious habit of Hollywood to cast white actors in non-white roles.

In 2015 alone, the casting of Emma Stone in Aloha, Rooney Mara in Pan and the entire caucasian cast of Gods of Egypt reignited controversy and disappointment about consistent whitewashing of non-white actors in film.

Warranted or not, Twitter is the home of much aggravated hate. Here, Mia Freedman explains how she handles criticism online.

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