NOTE: full review now posted here.

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This one slipped past me apparently. Ether that or Production IG have been keeping it very, very tightly under wraps.

Either way, apparently July 12 will see a Japanese theatrical release of Ghost in the Shell 2.0; a new special edition of the 1995 classic featuring some re-done CGI visual effects and a whole new, remastered 6.1 soundtrack. Anime News Network has all the precise details, and the one thing that worried me most is in that list of names there is no mention of the film’s original director Mamoru Oshii. Presumably he’s been far too busy with Sky Crawlers – which this release seems to be aimed at promoting – to have got involved himself.

Looking at the comparison images, it looks like most of the visual work has been done to bring some of the original’s scenes more in line with the aesthetic of the 2004 sequel, Innocence. And so far it looks like it’s been done quite subtly and effectively- that’s if you don’t mind things being a bit darker and, erm, more orangey.

I can’t say it doesn’t worry me though. GiTS is a film very close to my heart, for many reasons. Plus, and this may just be particularly bad timing, but less than a week ago I was sitting with a very good friend of mine, watching an HD encode of Star Wars: A New Hope that I had, ahem, obtained. We were quite happily sat there ohhing and ahhing over how amazing it still looked after all these years, and how Lucas obviously once had an amazing eye for colour and lighting, when the first fully CGI’d newly shoehorned in scene jarred us out of our nostalgia. I swear, the second I saw that Jawa hanging off that rope from that lizard thing, a little part of me died.

And don’t even get me started on that Greedo bullshit.