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  • Toho started in 1932, although they wouldn’t adopt the name Toho until 1943. Since their inception, the company has done numerous releases to mark their anniversary, sometimes with a single production but often times multiple. Ikiru (1952) marked Toho’s 20th anniversary. King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962) noted their 30th anniversary while King Kong Escapes (1967) carried their 35th anniversary banner. Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991), a “New Year’s film”, celebrated their 60th anniversary. Next year, 2022, marks Toho’s 90th anniversary. As part of this milestone, Toho is  celebrating not just on the big screen… but on the stage with a live theatrical adaptation of Spirited Away.

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    News // February 26, 2021
  • Looking for a little monster themed Valentine’s fun? Toho International has released Godzilla themed Valentine’s Day cards online. Five cards were made available in total, depicting Mechagodzilla (Showa), SpaceGodzilla, King Ghidorah (Heisei), Biollante Rose and Godzilla (Millennium). Each artwork depicts the monster along with a saying.

    The cards can be downloaded below, available in 1800×1800 in size once clicked so they can be printed off in good quality. …or alternatively, text or email the images to others as an e-Valentine. (more…)

    General // February 10, 2021
  • Legendary is continuing to expand the MonsterVerse. That franchise, first launching with Godzilla (2014), is now breaking on to TV. The series, titled Skull Island, will be animated and focus on the titular location of the movie Kong: Skull Island (2017). This article is a news roundup of details related to the upcoming series.

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    News // January 27, 2021
  • On October 26th, 2020, the forums suffered on outage. This issue was at the host level, who quickly rectified the dilemma. In doing so, they updated the PHP instance on the site to the latest version, exposing issues. The host kept rolling the PHP instance back until they found a working one, which took about a dozen tries. This exposed how outdated the forums had become, and highlighted that they were sitting on an aging tech stack: with components set to be depreciated. It required an update, although I had been resistant knowing this would wipe out modifications and styles for the forums. That said, a choice between having a forums that is more future proof versus keeping the old styles shouldn’t even have been a debate. Accepting this, the forums entered their third life cycle.

    Created way back in 2003, when the site first moved off free hosting to the tohokingdom.com domain, the forums have been a mainstay. They went through some bumpy starts as the site transitioned hosts, including losing everything during one transition, but have been stable for a decade now. In 2016, similar to what we are seeing now, the forums became outdated. This kicked off the second life cycle, and one can read about it and the even older styles that used to be associated with it.

    Four years later the site finds itself at a similar crossroads. So this blog is meant to chronicle the old Toho Kingdom forums styles from the second iteration. These were up from 2016 to 2020, although were all created in a time frame from 2016 to 2017. Some of these will return to the new forums, although slightly altered. Some will not. This article will act as archive of the styles from this period. The styles are sorted by popularity, at the time the forums were updated. (more…)

    General // November 7, 2020
  • November 3rd, 1954: the original Godzilla (1954) was released in theaters. This sparked a starting point for what would become a global franchise, one of the most recognizable in the world. It is also celebrated as the anniversary date of the Godzilla character. Toho has long honored the King of the Monsters’ birthday, although sometimes the month after as was the case with Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) which launched in December. In more recent years the festivities have occurred on November 3rd itself, with the 2019 event in Japan attracting over 20,000 visitors.

    This year, amongst the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Godzilla Day 2020 festival will be held virtually. More details are pending. To help celebrate, Toho is also extending licensing deals in the United States. One of these was already announced, the Godzilla costume for Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout. Another is with artist Shag, aka Josh Agle who is well known for his artwork surrounding the Disney resorts. He has created an image called “Kingu Monsuta” based around Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964). (more…)

    News // October 30, 2020
  • Toho and video game developer Mediatonic are teaming up to add a Godzilla costume for Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout. The costume allows players to dress up as the King of the Monsters holding a car, with a slight purple tint to the costume. After donning the costume, players can then join in on the massive multiplayer title, attempting to avoid being eliminated in round after round until one player remains. Rounds vary in format, from races to tail tag and a variety of other mini-games. 

    The Godzilla costume is one of several licensed cosmetics to appear in the game. Others includes items from Half-Life, PortalTeam Fortress 2, GrisMy Friend Pedro, Enter the Gungeon, Hotline Miami, Gato Roboto and Sonic the Hedgehog. The Godzilla costume is somewhat unique, though, for not being based directly on a video game franchise. A skin database for the title can be found online, to look through all of the items available for Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout.

    The items come out on November 3rd, 2020, for the PC and Sony Playstation 4 game. The date marks the 66th anniversary of Godzilla (1954).

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    News // October 29, 2020
  • Edits, additions and replacements. Toho’s large catalogue of films have sometimes been released untouched for the international markets, and other times have been hacked up almost beyond recognition. This article focuses on the rarely talked about musical component of this process, and looks to cite where music was inserted into a Toho film from an outside source when brought overseas. (more…)

    General // September 8, 2020
  • Updates have stalled for Godzilla: Defense Force, meaning the state of the current game will likely reflect the final state of the title. As a result, we are ready to present our last tier list for the mobile game, a much delayed Godzilla: Defense Force artifact tier list.

    This is arguably the most important tier list. While all artifacts are beneficial, as they all boost attack by +25% and have an added effect, the game is setup so that players won’t get them all. This is because of the scaling costs, which make it harder and harder to get the next artifact. Consequently, players should expect to get 18-20 artifacts out of a total of 23. This means players need to prioritize their artifacts, deciding which ones to keep and which ones to invest in through upgrading. The sooner the player makes this decision the better, as investing in artifacts makes them more expensive to deconstruct to try and get a new one. This can be unfairly punishing as for example it can cost 5,000 X-nium to deconstruct a level 25 artifact.
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    General // August 25, 2020
  • Released in 1958, Toho gives another shot at something topical for their science fiction inspiration. In this case, the subject is once more the March 1954 incident around the “Lucky Dragon” (Daigo Fukuryu Maru – 第五福龍丸). This is where the fishing vessel ended up being too close to a nuclear test site, despite being in a designated “safe” area. The radioactive fallout caused symptoms of radiation poisoning in the 23 crew-members, with one passing away as a result. The incident sparked news coverage and anger that led to the creation of an anti-nuclear movement in Japan. Famously, Toho tied aspects of the March incident to the original Godzilla (1954), with scenes that hit close to home for Japanese viewers of survivors later succumbing to the effects of radiation poisoning after encountering Godzilla at sea. For this 1958 movie, the company took things a step further, producing a film that’s much more overt in its topical inspiration. The end result by director Ishiro Honda is one of his better movies, something that works as a horror film mixed with a crime drama that takes the subject matter seriously while being aided by great special effects. It does falter though from especially weak characters in the narrative, which stop the movie from reaching its true potential.
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    Movie Reviews // July 3, 2020
  • There was once a time when I would begin planning the annual April Fools’ joke weeks in advance. Sometimes the concept would be locked in as early as January. Those days are gone, at least from me. If I end up being in charge of the festivities, it’s gonna be a scramble, and April Fools’ day 2020 fit that description. Basically about 72 hours before the day of, there was no plan. Me and Chris mulled over possibilities, but came to no conclusion. I was waiting for inspiration to hit, and it did in an unlikely place… (more…)

    General // April 1, 2020
  • Shortly after the turn of the century, Toho Music was on and off releasing CD soundtracks. From scores around director Akira Kurosawa to the expansive Godzilla Soundtrack Perfect line, a plethora of titles were issued. That is until 2013, when news and future releases stopped. A two disc set for The Last War (1961) would mark one of their final releases… but the torch would be passed. (more…)

    News // February 19, 2020
  • It’s been months since updates have stopped for Godzilla: Defense Force. That said, the game is still quite available. So for those still playing the game, or those just starting, here is a Godzilla: Defense Force card tier list. This should help players decide what cards to focus on or what cards to play. (more…)

    General // February 2, 2020
  • Wondering who the best allies are in the mobile game Godzilla: Defense Force? Looking for a Godzilla: Defense Force ally tier list? We break down the most formidable allies in the game, helping players decide where to spend their Moonstones. (more…)

    General // September 16, 2019
  • Trailers for past films are surprisingly enjoyable. A window into yesteryear in how the movie was marketed, while sometimes having Easter Eggs with scenes that only appear in the trailer, as is the case for Son of Godzilla (1967) and Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1974). Now the music found inside trailers is an aspect of their own. As is the case for Toho trailers, in particular those for the kaiju genre, many will recognize the music from past films, with Akira Ifukube‘s work being particularly prevalent for the Godzilla series. Sometimes Toho is a bit more unorthodox in their choices, such as an early advert for King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962) that featured music from The Hidden Fortress (1958). However, sometimes the music is totally alien… feeling like it didn’t come from another Toho movie at all. In fact, this became a growing trend in the 1990’s and beyond, as the company leaned toward using library music from outside sources. (more…)

    General // August 15, 2019
  • How common are “Godzilla rolls” on a Japanese restaurant menu? I plan to find out, searching across San Francisco for any and all Godzilla food items in restaurants. I’ll be excluding Godzila Sushi, which is really a mecca to the character and fully deserved its own article. As expected, these will be unlicensed items from these establishments. For each I will talk about the restaurant, the food item and anything else of note. Luckily there isn’t a “Godzilla roll archetype”, the same way there is for a “California roll” or a “Philadelphia roll”, so it should be a new experience each time. (more…)

    Kaiju Kuisine // May 21, 2019
  • It’s always a challenge to think of what to do on April 1st for Toho Kingdom, and April Fools’ day 2019 was no exception. As the years go on, we try not to repeat ourselves… too much. We’ve done concepts more than once, like blanketing the site with fake ads has been done a couple of times. That said, we do try to keep things a little fresh. (more…)

    General // April 1, 2019
  • When famed director Akira Kurosawa took to the stage in 1989 to accept an Honorary Academy Award, in many ways he did so to correct some of the past wrongs of the academy itself. Being one of the most influential directors of all time, Kurosawa was amazingly only nominated by the academy once over his very long career. So, in 1989, directors Steven Spielberg and George Lucas were selected to call out his contributions through the honorary category. (more…)

    General // February 25, 2019
  • The fandom is known to seek out the original versions of Toho’s films when at all possible, and for good reason. American distributors sometimes cut scenes, alter music and even add sequences to movies. The Return of Godzilla (1984) faced a similar treatment when it was brought over to the US as Godzilla 1985 by New World Pictures. However, while fans are quick to turn their nose up at the version for its “young general, evil Soviets, Dr. Pepper vending machine” ways, the American version did a lot of things right. Now I’m not defending Godzilla 1985 as the better version, it’s not. The US version added some awfully pointless scenes, but I feel it should be recognized for the many positive changes that were done. (more…)

    General // November 30, 2018
  • Living proof that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, comes a collection of films, done outside of Japan, which were heavily influenced by Toho produced, and distributed, movies. As expected, Akira Kurosawa‘s movies are easily the most influential films to have come out of Toho, or Japan for that matter, and their impact is reflected below. However, in more recent years, there has been a outreach to pay homage to other films to have gone through Toho by different directors. As a general note, GODZILLA (1998) and Godzilla (2014) are not listed in this section due to the more direct involvement with Toho and the utilization of Toho copyrighted characters. (more…)

    General // November 5, 2018
  • Being developed by Granzella and to be published by Bandai Namco, a new survival video game featuring kaiju is under development for the Sony Playstation 4. The title is played from the perspective of the humans, who are trying to survive while their town is besieged by giant monsters. Titled City Shrouded in Shadow (巨影都市) the game is set to be released this year, on October 19th, for the system. Rather than use original monsters, though, the game is taking some of the most popular icons in the genre to appear in the game. (more…)

    News // July 15, 2017