Godzilla Resurgence: Shin Godzilla - Toho's 2016 Godzilla Film
|Current News - Past News|
|Date:||12/7/2014 (Updated: 10/20/2016)|
|Author:||Anthony Romero, Chris Mirjahangir, and Joshua Sudomerski|
Japanese site Cinematoday has broken the news: Toho is going to make a new Godzilla film.
A decade after Godzilla: Final Wars (2004), Toho is ready to return the nuclear menace to the big screen. 2014 has been a big year for the King of the Monsters, both with Godzilla (2014) and his 60th birthday landing on the year. The Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros film was a hit in Japan, scoring over 3.2 billion yen at the box office at the time of writing this. That doesn't measure up to the Heisei series, but was a significant gain over all of the Millennium series pictures. Toho is eager to follow that up with a film of their own.
Similar to Godzilla 2000: Millennium (1999), which released right after GODZILLA (1998), Toho is going to start a franchise of their own that is going to be detached from the series Legendary Pictures is making (with the next US Godzilla film landing in 2018). Production on the new film will start in the summer of 2015, for a launch in 2016.
No staff or actors are attached to the project. The only hint toward the final production was that Toho mentioned the rapid growth in effects films in the country. They cited their recently released film Parasyte (trailer can be seen here) as a model for what to expect.
With all eyes on Toho, they announced several other facts to the public today.
As reported by 4-traders, in the Shinjuku district of Tokyo, Toho is planning to install a 12 meter tall head of Godzilla on the 80th floor terrace of a new building under construction. The location is fittingly their Toho Cinemas Shinjuku theater. After completion in April of 2015, the head is meant to look like it's gazing down at the district from 40 meters above ground (a total height similar to the Showa series version of the character). The 12 meter head will be modeled after the popular Heisei series design, pictured above.
Toho will also be starting Godzilla Conference (aka "Godzi-con" or ゴジコン): an organization to discuss and determine the strategy of Godzilla projects. This includes the new film and other venues related to the character, hoping to reach the growing Godzilla fanbase from the 2014 film. The members of the Godzilla Conference are currently all employed by Toho, but they are looking to expand to outside the company to best utilize venues around the King of the Monsters.
Update (12/08/2014): More news has come flooding in from the announcement. August Ragone has an incredible write up on the press announcement, including that there is still debate over if the next film will be brought to life from CGI or use suitmation. The film will be produced by Toho in-house, which most likely means it won't be part of a committee as is common with most contemporary Japanese productions.
In addition, The Hollywood Reporter reached out to Toho for some additional comments. The main gem is that the new film will be aimed at a "global market", which might come as a surprise given the proximity of release to the Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros. series. That said, Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) was also aimed at a global market, and it will be up to an interested third party to pick up the rights for it to actually achieve it.
Update (3/31/2015): It's been quite a dry spell for news on the upcoming Godzilla film from Toho, set for release next year. That silence was broken by Oricon Style which announced the director, writer and special effects director for the next Godzilla movie.
The chief director and screenplay writer will be Hideaki Anno. Anno isn't overly familiar among Toho's work, outside of the Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water TV series, but is known the world over for being in charge of the Evangelion series. This includes the TV show and recent run of Evangelion movies as well.
Anno will be joined by kaiju veteran Shinji Higuchi. While Higuchi has made a name for himself in recent years in the director's chair, on movies such as Lorelei (2005) and Sinking of Japan (2006), he is best known to monster fans for his special effects work. This includes the stunning performance as the special effects director for Gamera: Guardian of the Universe (1995), Gamera 2: Advent of Legion (1996) and Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris (1999). Higuchi will be acting as both a secondary director and also the main special effects director for the 2016 Godzilla film.
The announcement also revealed that Toho has been working on this project since at least 2013. In fact, Hideaki Anno was first approached by Toho in January 2013, but declined due to current hardships (Anno has been battling severe depression for many years). He changed his mind in March of 2013 after seeing that Higuchi was involved, and they presented their concept for the plot to Toho in June of 2013. A commitment to Animator Expo in 2014 kept Anno away from the project early that year before work continued, with development now in full swing.
In addition to the principal staff, a shot of Godzilla's foot was also released, which can be below. The shot included a note that this was a "max" size Godzilla, likely hinting that Toho is looking to top the size of the King of the Monsters from Godzilla (2014), currently the largest version.
Update (4/2/2015): Godzilla 2016 director Hideaki Anno wrote a piece about how he came to accept the offer to direct Godzilla 2016. Translation of the original article by the good folks at BlueFin!
"Why do we create? And why did I decide to make a fantastical tokusatsu film?
December 2012: Just after Eva Q opened, I was broken. I guess you could say I was depressed. That's what I get for spending the last six years of my life tearing my soul to pieces to create Eva once again.
Then came 2013. It was a year in which endless waves of mental negativity returned to me. I couldn't bring myself to get anywhere near the studio--the studio I represented and the studio that was burdened with my project.
My relationships with other people and society became distorted and the seemingly perpetual fatigue didn't help either. I was gradually consumed by my growing mental instability.
I caused all sorts of issues for many people during this period. But with the help of my wife and my friends, I managed to take a break from things. Mr. Hayao Miyazaki's offer of a voice role in his film gave me an opportunity to cling to anime production, and my friends making new installments of the anime series that made me become an anime fan in the first place helped me get through it without animation losing its place in my heart.
As a tokusatsu fan, I found that the still-running sentai series were also a major source of emotional support too.
November of that year. Mr. Shiro Sagisu's music video gave me the idea to produce a series of short animated films, but it also made remember just how fun anime is again. It reaffirmed my love of the medium and made me want to return to the studio, to yearn to produce again. I also felt that the studio and staff were getting burnt out working on Eva, and that they needed an opportunity to work on something that wasn't Eva for a little while. As an experiment, I started the Japanese Anima(-tor-) Expo, which is still ongoing. I'm glad we did it.
The start of 2014. I finally returned to the studio. And I slowly got back into producing anime, after spending over a year to rehabilitate my mind. In October of that year, during planning for a special collection of my work to be shown at the Tokyo International Film Festival, I was truly happy to have the opportunity to look back on the work I'd produced all the way back to when I was in high school.
And then came 2015. Now, 20 years after the original Eva was broadcast on TV, and after making everyone wait for more than two years, the Rebuild of Evangelion film series is nearing completion somehow.
All the people around me and anime fans everywhere are giving me the motivation to face the conclusion once again. And for that, I am deeply grateful. And I'd deeply appreciate it if you'd give me a little more time to complete the film.
So, at the same time, I'm also working on a fantastical tokusatsu film. It all started at the end of January of 2013.
I received an offer from Toho saying, "We'd like you to direct a new Godzilla film." I was still pretty mentally unstable, so I declined on the spot, "There's no way I could do that. I still have to finish Eva. I can't." But Toho's sincerity and the enthusiasm of my good friend, director Shinji Higuchi, swayed me, and by March, I'd accepted the position of director.
I decided to take the job because I arrived at the conclusion that I had the desire to see fantastical science fiction revived, instead of just being a continuation of the past, and all the love I poured into the tokusatsu museum project, and my desire to repay the pioneering creators who gave their dreams form. I decided to take the job because I knew that if I didn't take on another, new piece--something that wasn't Eva--I wouldn't be able to move forward.
That May, I decided what kind of film I wanted to make, and what kind of theme it ought to have. And then in June, I presented a proposal for a Godzilla film plan to Toho and began working on the plot and whatnot.
In the world of fantastical scifi, Godzilla isn't just an embodiment of hopes and dreams, but a caricature of reality--almost a kind of satirical reflection of the world. Painting present-day Japan in that light is something of a crazy experiment.
Speaking frankly, in Japan the budgets and schedules for film production are extremely tight compared to what they're like in Hollywood. I'm not sure exactly how far I'll ultimately be able to go within those limitations.
However, I'm proud of it as a movie and I'm working on both this film and Rebuild with all my might in the hopes that they'll be at least mildly entertaining films. When I think about what I've accomplished now, much like the plot of the film and the script, there have been many twists and turns in production to get to where I am now.
While I know that the words of a creator sound like nothing but excuses, and I recognize that I've done this before, but I wrote this rambling piece in the small hope that you all might understand why I'm making this fantastical sci-fi piece as a reflection on modern-day Japan.
On a final note, I want to thank everyone who supported me in my time of need, the fans who support my work, and everyone in the audience for giving me the will to create again.
Thank you very much,
Director/Producer, Hideaki Anno"
Original Japanese Source. Also be sure to check out August Ragone's take on the news here.
Update (9/18/2015): Variety has a report about the filming of next year's Godzilla film from Toho. Of note, the article mistakenly credits director Gareth Evans with directing the 2014 film and our friends at Gormaru Island get a shout out in the article as well for their brilliant coverage of the film on their Facebook page.
The article is light on news, although does note that evidence has pointed toward shooting already being underway. Most of this comes from footage that has surfaced of crowds running, such as this video on Gormaru Island.
Update (9/24/2015): Toho has launched the official site for the new film, called shin-godzilla.jp. The site calls the film "シン・ゴジラ", aka Shin Godzilla which would translate to "New Godzilla". The title was announced and confirmed at a September 22nd press release. So unless changed, this is likely to be the title the film releases under in Japan.
Along with the new site also comes some initial casting news, reported on with more details by August Ragone. Hiroki Hasegawa and Yutaka Takenouchi are cast as two leads dubbed as government officials. They are joined by Satomi Ishihara, recently seen as Hange "Hans" Zoe in Attack on Titan (2015), who is playing a US agent in the film.
Update (12/9/2015): It has been a busy news day for the upcoming Godzilla film, known as Godzilla Resurgence by it's international title that was unvieled earlier at the American Film Market.
The day brought us the release of a teaser poster for the new movie. This offered fans their first look at the new Godzilla, in a close up shot of his head. The poster showcased a more nightmarsh Godzilla than the franchise has been used to up to this point: with jagged, uneven teeth and a small, almost unnerving looking eye. It includes the tagline "Japan vs. Godzilla" (ニッポン対ゴジラ), which, in one of those meta moments, Tech Times credits the translation to Toho Kingdom's fans (yeah, our forums are pretty awesome).
The poster can be found on Toho's officail site for the film, or the image to the right can be clicked for a larger version.
Toho also issued their first trailer for the production, which can be seen at the end of this update. Appropriatly dubbed a teaser, the video is mostly focused on a panic striken crowd without any visual of Godzilla. It does showcase the Godzilla roar from Godzilla (1954), although that's not an indication if that will be the roar utilized in the final product.
Finally, August Ragone has also uncovered, through a Chunichi Sports report, the height of the new Godzilla. The beast is set to 118.5 meters in height. That outstrips the height of the Legendary Productions Godzilla, from Godzilla (2014), which was 108 meters in height and previously the largest version of the character.
The film will be released on July 29, 2016. It will be the first Godzilla film since the start of the Heisei series, begining with The Return of Godzilla (1984), not to be released in December as a New Years film.
Below is the teaser trailer that was released today.
Toho has also unleashed the English version of the poster.
The design is similar to the Japanese version, although it contains a lot more text. It removes the "Japan vs. Godzilla" tagline and instead focuses on highlighting the cast and crew behind the production.
None of the cast or crew mentioned on the poster is new information. At the top three actors are cited: Hiroki Hasegawa, Yutaka Takenouchi and Satomi Ishihara. Shinji Higuchi, cited as the co-director and VFX director, gets next billing. Katsuro Onoue is then billed as the associate director and VFX creative director. This is finally followed by Hideaki Anno's credit as the director and writer for the film.
The poster then mentions the July 29, 2016, release date, and stresses it's for Japan.
Click the image to the left to view a larger version of the English poster.
Update (12/14/2015): Toho has updated their movie listing for the upcoming Godzilla film. The update contains one new piece of info, which is the film's composer: Shiro Sagisu. Best known for his work on Neon Genesis Evangelion, with this movie's director Hideaki Anno, Sagisu most recently worked with this film's co-director Shinji Higuchi on Attack on Titan (2015).
The updated bio also contains a variant of the previously seen Japanese poster. This one includes more text on it but is otherwise unchanged.
Update (4/13/2016): Today Toho has released two trailers for the new Godzilla film, which is quickly approaching its July 29th, 2016, release date.
The first of these trailers, dubbed as a news flash, runs for 32 seconds and focuses mostly on Godzilla with quick shots of the cast:
The second trailer, dubbed as "notice", runs for 92 seconds. It's an expanded version that features mostly the same footage of Godzilla, although with a few extra shots, but spends most of its running time devoted to the movie's large cast:
The second trailer opens with the Toho Scope logo that ran on productions in the 1950's and 1960's.
The cast highlighted during the trailers includes both the principal cast and also supporting. Among the supporting are Godzilla acting veterans Akira Emoto, last seen as Yuki in Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla (1994), and Jun Kunimura, who played Major Komuro in Godzilla: Final Wars (2004).
The trailers displayed a large emphasis on the military in the movie as well, showing a lot of conventional weapons being utilized against the nuclear menace.
To coincide with the launch of the trailer, website Natalie has also run an expose on the film. The article contains a wealth of production stills surrounding the new movie. This includes various profile shots for the cast in the film. Among the images is the very clear one of the new Godzilla, seen to the right, which showcases the horrific design for the character.
Update (7/20/2016): Toho has uploaded a new trailer for the movie, which can be viewed below. Dubbed "notice 2", it runs for 92 seconds and features more new shots of the cast and Godzilla's endless rampage, who is bombarded relentlessly by military weaponry. It ends on an enticing teaser for Godzilla's iconic signature attack.
Update (7/22/2016): Funimation, at their panel at Comic-Con International: San Diego, has announced that they have picked up distribution rights for Godzilla Resurgence within North America, South America, Central America and the Caribbean regions.
The agreement is said to cover theatrical, broadcast and video on demand releases, although glosses over home video unless these rights also covered by on demand. A theatrical release is stated to be coming later this year, in 2016. Funimation is no stranger to releasing Toho films in US theaters, have done so for a very limited release for Attack on Titan (2015).
Update (7/23/2016): Following up on yesterday's news, in Funimation's latest press release, it was revealed that Godzilla Resurgence has been renamed to Shin Godzilla as its new English title for the distribution regions that Funimation will be releasing the title in. The CEO and President of Funimation, Gen Fukunaga, mentioned how the company is working closely with Toho, and that they are excited to bring Shin Godzilla to audiences in the Americas.
Update (8/18/2016): Godzilla Resurgence is enjoying a healthy box office run in Japan. It has now topped ¥3.3 billion, which is higher than the ¥3.2 billion that Godzilla (2014) generated in the country. This also means the film has exceeded the performance of all of the Millennium Godzilla movies, including the ¥2.71 billion that Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001) earned.
To date, over 2.3 million people have seen the 2016 Godzilla film in Japan.
Update (8/31/2016): Fandango has information on Godzilla Resurgence's US release as Shin Godzilla in October. Being distributed by Funimation, the title will launch in limited release on the 11th. The US poster for the film also states the engagement dates, which will run through October 18th. The poster, very similar to the International one, does make the interesting creative choice of obscuring the character's eye. The poster can be seen to the right.
In addition, an article was posted a few days ago which translated a few quotes from the cast and crew behind the film that were made around the initial release in Japan. This includes a heart warming note from director Hideaki Anno about the movie making him want to work again, after previously noting a serious battle with depression.
Update (9/03/2016): As part of the US release of the film, Funimation has released both a press release and an official site for the movie. The release includes a quote from their EVP to rally fans to pre-order: "Movie audiences can look forward to a great time watching 'SHIN GODZILLA' this October," said Mike DuBoise, EVP and COO of Funimation. "A larger than life monster like Godzilla has to be experienced on the big screen. And we expect this movie to sellout in numerous theaters so we encourage fans to purchase tickets in advance."
Another nugget contained in the press release is the current haul for the film in Japan, which as of last weekend stands at ¥5,302,014,700 and a total attendance of 3,637,748. That total places the film as, likely, the highest grossing Godzilla film in Japan, besting the previous record held by Godzilla vs. Mothra (1992). That film garnered ¥2,220,000,000 in distribution earnings, which are usually anywhere from 45%-70% of the total earnings. Unless the distribution earnings were closer to 45% (which would be ¥5,661,000,000) it's likely that Godzilla Resurgence has surpassed it. The film still has a ways to go to beat the attendance of the 1992 movie, though, which was 4,200,000.
Update (09/10/2016): Funimation Films has released a trailer promoting the limited theatrical run of Godzilla Resurgence, called Shin Godzilla in the United States, as well as updating their official movie page with a theater locator and the ability to pre-purchase tickets. The trailer, titled "Shin Godzilla - Theatrical Trailer", runs for 92 seconds and features a variety of split-second scenes largely consisting of the human cast while classic Akira Ifukube music plays in the background, ending on a brief shot of Godzilla walking through a city at night.
Update (10/07/2016): Funimation Films has given us a timed exclusive still image from Godzilla Resurgence (2016). The movie, which had its US preimere earlier this week, has a limited release set for next week. Be sure to check online sources like Fandago to see if the movie is playing in your area.
Below is the still image, click to enlarge.
Update (10/20/2016): Funimation Films has issued a press release about the US run of Godzilla Resurgence (2016), commenting that the run will be slightly extended. Below are the release and details:
Godzilla, King of the Monsters, has taken over North America. The limited theatrical engagement of "SHIN GODZILLA" was scheduled to close tonight but in the wake of overwhelming fan response, Funimation Films announced that the movie will be extended due to popular demand. A special Saturday matinee screening of the film will take place on October 22 in more than 200 theaters across the U.S. and Canada. In addition, multiple national theater chains will be offering daily screenings of "SHIN GODZILLA" in select locations thru October 27. A complete list of locations for both this Saturday's matinee as well as the new daily screenings is available via a theater locator on the official film website.
"We're thrilled with the tremendous response to 'SHIN GODZILLA' from the press, audiences and our theatrical partners," said Gen Fukunaga, CEO and President of Funimation. "Fans have been asking and we're pleased to confirm that the movie will extend its run with this Saturday's matinee as well as more than a week of daily screening."
"SHIN GODZILLA" hit the $1M mark at the box office in its first three days and has grossed more than $1.5M since opening on October 11. It is the 29th film produced by Toho Co., Ltd. in the iconic science fiction monster franchise and is co-directed by Hideaki Anno (creator of "Evangelion") and co- directed by Shinji Higuchi (director of Toho's 2015 "Attack on Titan" live action movies).
"We were confident that 'SHIN GODZILLA' would be a hit with audiences and we're excited to extend its theatrical run to keep up with fan demand," said Mike DuBoise, EVP and COO of Funimation. "If you haven't seen 'SHIN GODZILLA' yet or want to catch an encore before it leaves theaters – now is the time."
To purchase tickets to or find more information on "SHIN GODZILLA," visit funimationfilms.com/shingodzilla.
Check back for more news as it breaks.