Man in suit!
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There’s no denying just how hugely popular Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla reboot was, taking in over $200 million here in the U.S. and another $324 million around the world. The moody disaster flick was also a huge hit in Japan, and that got the original Godzilla production company, Toho, thinking about dollar signs. So it makes perfect sense that the studio announced it will begin developing its first Godzilla movie in ten years, with a release tentatively scheduled for 2016. Is there a Japanese equivalent to Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s acting face?
Here’s how a Toho employee put it to THR:
This is very good timing after the success of the American version this year: if not now, then when? The licensing contract we have with Legendary places no restrictions on us making domestic versions.
Living in a world where there is more than one Godzilla movie currently making the rounds would be a (admittedly unimportant) dream come true for Adult Me. There was some joy when Godilla 2000: Millennium came out not long after Roland Emmerich shit the bed with his 1998 remake starring Matthew Broderick, and completely blowing that Americanized schlock out of the water.
This will be Godzilla’s 29th round as one of Earth’s mightiest creatures, though it’s impossible to imagine Toho’s feature being on a more epic scale than Edwards’ film. (The last franchise film Toho produced was 2004’s Godzilla: Final Wars, meaning even Godzilla isn’t immune to the horror genre’s insistence on using “final” in the title of non-final films.) But I’m betting Toho’s film is actually going to spend a decent amount of time putting the fire-breathing monster front-and-center for longer than ten seconds a pop. And while the era of the Man-in-a-Suit monster movies has been largely overwritten by exhaustive CGI, I really, really hope that Toho considers their options wisely.
The studio reportedly understands that they aren’t able to similarly dump $200 million on anything, much less a Godzilla movie, but the current state of CGI will allow them to “create a film that can stand alongside such productions” as Edwards’ film. Seriously, it doesn’t even take CGI. It just takes interesting human beings and a willingness to show people the titular character.
And it isn’t just all about the movie. Toho also announced they’ll be holding a Godzilla Strategic Conference, which they’re calling Godzi-Con, that will cull together directors and studio execs who will find different ways of pushing Godzilla into marketing and merchandising. Can you imagine the cosplay going on at this thing?
Should it come out in 2016, the new Japanese Godzilla movie will still be two years ahead of Edwards’ sequel. Which one are you guys looking forward to more?