The official Japanese website of the live-action Ghost in the Shell film began streaming a video for the film on Friday. The video, which began playing in Japanese theaters with the opening of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on Thursday, reveals the film's Japanese opening date of April 7. IGN previously streamed the "shelling sequence" clip for the film last month, which mirrors the opening scene of Mamoru Oshii's Ghost in the Shell anime film. Dreamworks and Paramount are co-financing and co-producing the film. Paramount Pictures is the film's new distributor, after Dreamworks ended its distribution deal with Walt Disney Pictures. The film is currently slated for release on March 31, 2017. Principal photography began in Wellington, New Zealand in January. Scarlett Johansson stars in the film as the Major, and Pilou Asbæk (Lucy) plays Batou. Michael Pitt (Boardwalk Empire) plays the Laughing Man. Director, comedian, and actor Beat Takeshi (also known as Takeshi Kitano) plays the Public Security Section 9 founder and chief Daisuke Aramaki. French actress Juliette Binoche (2014's Godzilla, The English Patient, Chocolat) plays Dr. Ouelet, and Kaori Momoi (Sukiyaki Western Django, Memoirs of a Geisha, Helter Skelter) and Rila Fukushima (The Wolverine) also have roles in the film. The actors for the other Section 9 task force members include: Chin Han (Independence Day: Resurgence), Danusia Samal (Tyrant), Lasarus Ratuere (Terra Nova), Yutaka Izumihara (Unbroken), and Tuwanda Manyimo (The Rover). Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman) is directing the film. Jonathan Herman (Straight Outta Compton) reworked the earlier drafts of the script written by William Wheeler (Hoax, The Reluctant Fundamentalist) and Jamie Moss (Street Kings). Weta Workshop and its co-founder Richard Taylor are working on the film. Additional staff members include cinematographer Jess Hall (The Spectacular Now), editor Neil Smith (Snow White and the Huntsman), production designer Jan Roelfs (Fast & Furious 6), and costume designers Kurt Swanson and Bart Mueller (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay). The anime studio Production I.G pitched the rights for Masamune Shirow's original cyber-police manga on behalf of the manga's publisher Kodansha in 2007, and Dreamworks acquired the live-action film rights in 2008. Ari Arad (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance), Avi Arad (formerly of Marvel Studios as well as of the Spider-Man and X-Men movie franchises), and Seaside Entertainment's Steven Paul (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance) are producing. The executive producers include Michael Costigan (Prometheus), Jeffrey Silver (Edge of Tomorrow, 300), Tetsu Fujimura (Tekken), and Production I.G founder and head Mitsuhisa Ishikawa.