It’s been a few years since I gave the Godzilla fandom an exclusive Christmas present on behalf of myself and Toho Kingdom (the last one being the soundtrack to Godzilla Unleashed!). This time I’m back with a piece of Showa history: a Nick Adams letter.
That’s right: what we have here is a handwritten letter by Invasion of Astro-Monster (1965) actor Nick Adams. To those who grew up in the 1950’s and 1960’s, the actor is well remembered in the States for his role as Johnny Yuma in the Rebel and being close friends with James Dean and Elvis Presley. Dated June 11, 1965, Adams talks in the letter about Frankenstein vs. Baragon (1965) that he was filming at the time in Japan. It should be noted that in the letter he calls the movie “Frankenstein Meets the Giant Devil Fish”. This was the pre-release US title of the movie before the name “Frankenstein Conquers the World” was used instead.
I took these photos myself back on Oct 12, 2013 and the letter is a part of the Brad Thompson collection. He has been kind enough to allow me to share the photos with Godzilla fans worldwide! Merry Christmas everyone!
Nick Adams and Toho
The actor starred in a trio of Toho films, joining the company as they were looking to increase the box office clout of their films overseas. His first was the Frankenstein starer, which is the subject of the letter above. His second happened that same year, as he headlined the 1965 Godzilla movie, sometimes referred to as Godzilla vs. Monster Zero. The final Toho film to star the actor happened a few years later, for 1967’s The Killing Bottle. This movie is part of the International Secret Police series, of which the most famous, or infamous, is Key of Keys (1965). The reason for its infamy comes from Woody Allen’s adapting it as What’s Up, Tiger Lily? in 1966. Despite this, Toho wasn’t shy about crafting another entry in the series, as Nick Adams was able to round out his tenure at Toho on the 1967 film.