I know that there were many, many, many changes made from the book Ready Player One to the movie adaption. But the most puzzling to me is why the character called "Shoto" in the book was renamed "Sho" for the movie?

They kept his partner's name, Daito, the same. And since Daito and Shoto are both classifications of Japanese swords, it seems it would make more sense (especially for Japanese audiences) to keep the name as "Shoto".

Any idea why the filmmakers made this seemingly capricious change?

  • In the book, the pair is also known as "Daisho", the term for the set of swords. Might just be a shortening of that, but it's all conjecture until a writer explains.
    – JohnP
    Apr 5, 2018 at 16:34

2 Answers 2


There's an entry in UrbanDictionary.com for shoto. This seems to be a fairly family friendly forum so I'll just say that the definition is sexually explicit and the makers may have wanted to avoid any association with it - particularly for a child character.

This is a guess based only on a google search for "shoto".

  • Are you sure you're not thinking of "shota"? I only found one explicit definition of "shoto" on UD, and it's heavily downvoted - clearly not commonly used.
    – Grollo
    Apr 9, 2018 at 7:38
  • 1
    @Grollo - like I said, I just googled "shoto", found the urban dictionary entry and put forward this hypothesis - I hadn't heard of it before and didn't suggest it was common but I think it is conceivable that a production company would check foreign / made-up names in this manner for unsavoury alternative meanings.
    – Mr_Thyroid
    Apr 9, 2018 at 16:48

In the book, Shoto is often shortened to Sho - so the movie just adapting that has some precedence.

  • 2
    This has ended up in the low-quality queue, most likely because it's a one-line answer. I'd recommend adding an example or two from the book to back up your answer.
    – F1Krazy
    Apr 3, 2018 at 12:14
  • 4
    Sorry, I have to disagree. I own a digital copy of the book and a search for "Shoto" returns 200 results, but searching for just "Sho" returns none. Unless you have a different printing.
    – PaulStock
    Apr 3, 2018 at 20:06
  • 1
    Indeed, confirmed in my e-copy. There is NO reference to "Sho" whatsoever. This answer is just WRONG.
    – Paulie_D
    Apr 4, 2018 at 10:44
  • I have the audiobook version - and perhaps I'm wrong, but I could swear I heard the narrator have Parzival refer to Shoto as Sho a few times. Apr 4, 2018 at 12:08

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