AMS Spring 2023

Dear Scarlett: You are so Beautiful—Especially as a Totally Normal 3D Printed Humanoid!


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Engineer Ricky Ma with his Scarlett Johansson 3D printed humanoid.

The glamor of Hollywood—and especially starlets—has forever been enticing. Their beauty and personal stories are fascinating to the world. And while some of us are content with the occasional read in the grocery store line to see which white sandy beaches our favorite actors are jet-setting off to for photo ops in itsy bitsy bikinis, or whose incredibly handsome arm they are gracing this week, a number of fans around the world get a little more intense. From serious worship to going so far as to get plastic surgery to look like their favorite celebrities, sometimes the fans actually get their time in the press too—all due to quite the ‘elevated sense’ of adoration.

And while Ricky Ma might be taking celebrity obsession to an all-time high, he gets some major science cred after spending 18 months and £34,000 (that’s nearly $50K USD) building his Scarlett Johansson cyborg. Officially referred to as the Mark 1 model, this robotic feat is also 70 percent 3D printed and was born on the balcony of his Hong Kong apartment.

oneTechnology aside though, the face is absolutely uncanny in its super realism, and you’ll find yourself transfixed for a while before you snap out of it and begin considering the amount of work that went into this incredible project. No, she is not a sex doll, but she is a full-sized humanoid, with her famous curvy figure sumptuously on display in a crop top and grey skirt.

“You are so beautiful,” says her creator, as the robot smiles, showing off that comely schoolgirl smile we all associate with Johannson. She also responds with a giggle and a thank you.

Mixing his passion for self-taught engineering and robotics with quite an obvious affection for the blonde haired, green eyed actor, Ricky Ma imbued his Scarlett with the ability to change facial expressions (note some pretty perfect makeup too) and respond to verbal commands. The engineer states that the project was indeed very difficult to pull off, and he met with criticism from those who simply could not understand why he would want to create such a thing. People went so far as to ask him if he were just plain stupid, wondering what he was thinking spending so much money.

“I figured I should just do it when the timing is right and realize my dream. If I realize my dream, I will have no regrets in life,” the designer triumphs.

mainThe project was, in fact, such a challenge that he wants to write a book to inspire other engineers as well. His passion for robotics is obviously the stronger theme here, and was what caused him to keep forging ahead even as he met obstacles such as motors burning out and balance issues.

“When I was a child, I liked robots,” says the Hong Kong based designer. “Why? Because I liked watching animation. There were Transformers, cartoons about robots fighting each other, and games about robots.”

The robot’s skin is made with silicone, and her interior houses all the mechanics and electronics. She is able to exhibit emotion and respond to a list of rudimentary commands, as well as spouting off a few phrases. Ma’s goal is to find a partner interested in investing in this prototype. Upon receiving more capital for his project, he hopes to build other even more advanced robots.Product and graphic designer Ricky Ma, 42, explains the face and colour tracking functions of his life-size robot "Mark 1", modelled after a Hollywood star, in Hong Kong, China March 31, 2016. REUTERS/Bobby

To make things even a bit more humorous, Ma has declined to say who the robot is modeled after. ScarJo, however—sporting a slight Asian accent—has plenty to say, and she’s very technologically concerned:

“I think robotics is a new manufacturing and it can help people to do some high-risk work, and go to top of the mountain and deep ocean to realize our world adventure.”

Aside from innovations being made on Hong Kong balconies, many of us today are also eagerly soaking up details about the incredible strides scientists are making in labs, creating even further, futuristic 3D printers, materials, publishing results on everything from 3D printed kidney models to kidney tissue and a variety of other cellular structures that have us all wondering when the first 3D printed organ for transplant will announced.

We wonder about 3D printed homes and cars, and far-out colonies in space. And, whew, if 3D printed bombshell robots were on your ‘to watch for’ list, you can mark that off today—and even become an investor, if you are so inclined. Were you surprised to see ScarJo as a robot? Discuss in the 3D Printed ScarJo forum over at

[Sources: Daily StarEngadget/Reuters; video from Mail Online ]
American actress, model and singer currently starring in "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" on Broadway, Scarlett Johansson poses for a portrait, on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012 at Sardi's in New York. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP)

The real Scarlett Johannson.

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