Photo via Ricky Ma

Totally sane, normal man builds $50,000 Scarlett Johansson robot

He says he wants to keep the celebrity's identity 'under wraps.'

Feb 29, 2020, 9:14 am*



Mike Wehner

Robots replacing humans is a familiar sci-fi trope, but the creepily realistic Scarlett Johansson robot one designer in Hong Kong has built is all too real.

Ricky Ma, a 42-year-old inventor, built the robot by 3D-printing the bulk of the skeleton and wiring all the electronic and mechanical hardware together by hand.

The bot, which bears a striking resemblance to Johansson, reportedly cost him more than $50,000.

Ricky Ma

Ma told Reuters that it’s always been his dream to build a robot and that he decided one day to make that dream a reality. The robot has already taken him more than a year and a half to build, and it has required him to become an expert on tasks like programming. 

The robot, which Ma has named simply “Mark 1,” can respond to verbal commands and mimic facial expressions like winking and smiling. Curiously, Ma said that he’d like to keep the identity of his inspiration a secret, but it’s all too obvious on whom he based it.

Ma said he hoped to sell the robot to an investor in order to fund future projects.

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*First Published: Apr 4, 2016, 12:37 pm