It seems like the Ghost in the Shell: Arise was announced just a few weeks ago, but it's actually been closer to four months.
This is kinda relevant because, over the weekend, the official website for Ghost in the Shell: Arise began streaming a 90-second trailer for the new series that's full of prequel-y goodness.
Events of Arise predate all existing Ghost in the Shell installments, and are set in 2027 - or, one year after the fourth hypothetical world war (damn Canada's ceaseless belligerence ) As such, members of Section 9 have a more youthful appearance about them since they're younger... cyborgs.
...except for Togusa, who (in the anime, at least) is the only natural human in the group and somehow looks identical to how he does later in the show's storyline. Perhaps this is setting the stage for a vampire story arc?
Eh, probably not... but if Bleach could do it to kill some time, I wouldn't put it past Ghost in the Shell.
As for the story of Arise, there's a rash of strange incidents in New Port City which Public Security's Daisuke Aramaki is sent to investigate. He happens across Motoko Kusanagi and her totally sweet red leather jacket during the investigation, and her BFF Batou suspects that she's the one responsible for the attacks.
Hilarity, fingerpointing, and hacking ensue. And it will be awesome.
The artwork for Arise features a pretty nice nod to early 1980s anime with the character design of the team, especially with Ishikawa (second from the right) and Saito (second from the left). Happily, the South Park-style Motoko that we saw back in January seems to be toned down some.
There's no word yet on when Arise will make it to the west, but Anime News Network reports it'll hit Japanese theaters on June 22 with a DVD/Blu-ray release on July 26.