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2004: the 50th anniversary of Godzilla. For the occasion, Toho is pulling out all the stops, going for a large scale production for the occasion. Titled Godzilla: Final Wars (2004), this article tracks the progress of that movie, from its announcement toward its eventual release.
October 21st update
As previously rumored, the next, and supposedly last for the foreseeable future, Godzilla film will have its worldwide premiere in Los Angeles, California, at the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. The date set for the unveiling is November 29th, 2004. The event will also be christened with the King of the Monsters’ inclusion into Hollywood’s Walk of Fame at 11:30 am on Monday, November the 29th, with director Ryuhei Kitamura and suit actor Tsutomu Kitagawa attending Godzilla’s commemoration. Godzilla is also set to make a large showing during Hollywood’s Christmas Parade, on November 28th, in the form of a promotional suit and a large float intended to promote Godzilla: Final Wars.
September 1st update
Guarby’s has posted seven images, scanned in from a magazine, pertaining to Hedorah, the Smog Monster, and Ebirah, the Sea Monster,’s appearances. The images show close ups of both of the monsters’ faces, along with a shot of Ebirah on a collision course with Hedorah.
August 30th update
Monster Zero has posted a brief, 19 second, preview of the latest Godzilla film, Godzilla: Final Wars. The trailer shows numerous kaiju from the film, including Rodan and Gigan, and also shows a scene from the now famous battle with Godzilla and the American Godzilla, called Zilla in this film, that takes place in Sydney. The scenes in the film are still very early in development, so this doesn’t necessarily dictate what the final product will look like.
Below are screen captures from the TV spot, for those having trouble seeing the video.RodanAnguirusKing CaesarKumongaMothra vs. GiganEbirahGiganMonster XZillaGodzilla vs. Zilla
August 24th update
Monster Zero has translated a news article related to Godzilla: Final Wars which reveals that the new Godzilla film, which has been reported to be the last in at least a decade, will pit the Japanese Godzilla against his American counterpart, from the 1998 film GODZILLA. To avoid confusion, the American Godzilla will be referred to as simply “Zilla” in the film. The historic confrontation will take place in Sydney, Australia, in the film and, in following with his portrayal in his own film, “Zilla” will be computer generated (CGI).
These latest reports also add credence to producer Shogo Tomiyama‘s earlier musing about a Godzilla vs. Godzilla confrontation, and also mean that the earlier rumor which reported Gorosaurus in the production had likely confused the bipedal dinosaur with the American Godzilla.
July 30th update
Guarby has released scans of the new Kumonga and Kamacuras props in action, and fighting Godzilla. One of the scans also reveals the size of the Kamacuras which is 90 meters in height with a mass of 20,000 tons, almost twice the size of the Showa incarnation with a weight comparable to the Showa Godzilla.
July 7th update
Henshin!Online has posted a new report which reveals Monster X to be the first form of the new Ghidorah, dubbed Keizer Ghidorah. The new Ghidorah will walk on four legs, like Desghidorah.
May 24th update
Toho’s official Godzilla site has been updated with a number of never before seen details regarding the latest Godzilla film. Including the final kaiju roster, story details, and sketches of the new designs.
The film’s final kaiju roster appears to be: Godzilla, Gigan, Rodan, Minilla, Mothra (Imago), Kamacuras, Kumonga, Manda, Ebirah, Anguirus, King Caesar, Hedorah and Monster X. This discredits earlier reports of Gorosaurus and Mothra (Larva) from the previous roster. Also, the Gotengo, most likely modeled more after the ship in The War in Space (1977) instead of the one in Atragon (1963), the collapsed star Gorath and the Xiliens from Invasion of Astro- Monster (1965) will make appearances in the film as well.
Gigan Minilla Rodan Mothra Kamacuras Kumonga Manda Ebirah Anguirus King Caesar Hedorah Monster X
May 1st update
Shanghai Daily is reporting quite a gamut of spoilers, including the ending, on the upcoming Godzilla movie: Godzilla: Final Wars (2004). If it’s true or not, only time will tell; however, they do say at least one questionable fact:
“Toho Pictures has produced 22 movies starring Godzilla since 1954. Hollywood also paid the company to produce its version in 1998.”
22 is pretty far off the total Godzilla movies that Toho has made, which is now at 27 not including Godzilla: Final Wars (2004). 22 is exactly how many films were done before the start of the “Millennium series” in 1999, though, so perhaps they were just looking at a outdated figure. Anyway, here are some highlights from that article by Shanghai Daily, so please stop reading if you wish to avoid spoilers:
“Godzilla is finally going to die – honest. And it’s going to happen in Shanghai. In “Godzilla: Final Wars,” the fictitious green monster that wreaked chaos around the world will lose his final battle to a fire dragon and die by the Oriental Pearl TV Tower in Pudong. …Godzilla’s child is killed accidentally by humans, which drives the monster crazy. The reptile-like creature then goes on a massive rampage around the world, according to a local film import company that will assist in the shooting of the local parts. After several rounds of epic encounters, Godzilla faces the fire dragon. The final battle is set to happen on the Bund.
Godzilla’s fury will not be contained to Shanghai however. He will also smash, bash and crash his way through the United States, France, Australia and other countries. ”
April 25th update
It seems that first confirmation on a roster for the new Godzilla film, Godzilla: Final Wars, has finally materialized. Following a rumor that Monster Zero was hosting, and then later confirmed, a total of 14 kaiju names have been dropped, and include:
– King Ghidorah
– King Caesar
– Monster X
There is a chance that the list is not complete, and that there might be more kaiju in the film. It should also be noted that the King Ghidorah featured in the film will have four legs.
March 4th update
CNN has an article up talking about the King of the Monsters’ upcoming “hibernation,” and adds further verification to the nearing end to the Millennium series. CNN quotes Shogo Tomiyama in the article as well, who gives up the estimate of a decade long rest to the Godzilla series. The article can be read here.
March 2nd update
More news has poured in on the 50th anniversary Godzilla film, previously dubbed THE GODZILLA, confirming everything from the director, release date, to possible details on the actual film. Toho’s official Godzilla site has reported that the film is being directed by Ryuhei Kitamura, as others sites had previously reported. Ryuhei Kitamura directed the 2000 film Versus along with the 2003 Toho offering Azumi, but his credits are quite varied and even include directorial work for the upcoming Gamecube game Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes. The name Godzilla: Final Wars is also being used by the site for the 28th Godzilla film. Toho is reporting that the movie will release December 11th, 2004.
Monster Zero has several other tidbits of information which they have acquired from translating various news articles. The most interesting of which include:
– A redesigned Godzilla (hinted at being more mobile)
– A monster cast of around 10, names dropped include Mothra along with a possible new monster for the moment dubbed “Monster X”
– A “long time fan favorite” will supposedly make a come back
– Producer Shogo Tomiyama hints that this could be the last Godzilla film for some time and will likely mark the end of the Millennium Series
– Godzilla: Final Wars will not be paired up with a Hamaturo film, as done for the past three Godzilla movies
– Locations in the film will include, among several, New York, Shangai and Paris
– The film will feature a world in which numerous monsters have been born from atomic tests
– Director, Kitamura, wants a Godzilla which can defeat a foe in a single blow
– Wataru Mimua and Tomiyama worked on the story elements of Godzilla: Final Wars before handing the project over to
– Kitamura and Isao Kiriyama, who has worked with Kitamura Azumi (2003), created the final script
– Eiichi Asada, who did the SFX work for Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003), will direct the special effects for the 50th anniversary flick.
– Cinematographer will be Takumi Furuya, who did the cinematography on Azumi (2003)
December 14th, 2003 update
Toho has disclosed information of Godzilla’s 50th Anniversary film, which is being tentatively titled simply “THE GODZILLA.”Toho has stated that they are actually in the final stages of developing what will end up being the next Godzilla film. Toho has stated that this Godzilla film will be a larger scale production than what the series is used to. The film, supposedly, is to feature an “all star” cast of both characters and crew; whether this means the inclusion of classic monsters such as Rodan and Anguirus or the ever popular Mothra and King Ghidorah is anyone’s guess. To date, a crew for the film has not been established, save Shogo Tomiyama‘s likely spot as the film’s producer.
The tentative title for this project is in fact “THE GODZILLA,” English spelling of the word Godzilla, not Gojira. According to Toho this was done to drive more interest in the film internationally. Toho is banking on the success of this film to elevate the series, and to create more international awareness.News // October 30, 2004
Rialto Pictures, a company that focuses on the restoration and re-releasing of classic films theatrically and on DVD, is currently poised to release the 1954 classic Godzilla, or Gojira, in theaters in the United States for Spring/Summer of 2004. The version shown will be the uncut Japanese version of the film, not the 1956 Godzilla King of the Monsters’ version with Raymund Burr. This article is a news roundup for the release of the uncut Japanese version of the original Godzilla film, set for the 50th anniversary of the production.
May 9th update
This weekend, starting Friday May 7th, Rialto Pictures’ release of Godzilla (1954) starts off its country wide tour with the Castro theater in San Fransico and the Film Forum in New York. As previously mentioned, and highly touted by Rialto, this release is of the uncut Japanese version. In time for the film’s limited release, the company has unleashed a modest advertising campaign (a newspaper advertisement for the film can be seen to the right), but Rialto has mostly been relying on positive critical praise to pack the theaters. So far, thankfully, critical acclaim for Ishiro Honda‘s masterpiece has been strong, and the film has maintained a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
However, Godzilla fans are likely already well versed in the merits of the first Godzilla film, which leaves the question: how was Rialto’s presentation of the movie?
On Saturday May 8th, I attended the 7:00pm showing, which was almost a full house, of Godzilla at the Castro theater to see how Rialto’s release stacked up, and I can say, with some honesty, I was a little disappointed.
I was warned in advance that the print used contained numerous scratches, but I wasn’t quite prepared for the amount that greeted me in the film’s opening scenes. Some of the early scene changes also appeared to be damaged on the print, as there was a split second of black or white added to the transitions. The audio, while generally good, also could have used some work, as pops could be heard during the course of the movie.
The subtitles were good during the movie, newly commissioned and spot on, although they became a little hard to read when placed on a white background.
In terms of changes made: none. The Rialto logo appears on the screen before the movie starts, with the original 1954 message thanking the Japanese Coast Guard for their cooperation. Everything on this print is intact, just not in pristine condition.
Audience reaction to the film was strong though; as the Toho logo, Godzilla’s first appearance, and the ending were all meet with a theater wide applause. Oddly enough, the Oxygen Destroyer name got a few unintentional laughs, which is something that has been so ingrained in me at a young age I never really thought of the name as being a little over the top, but was the only sequence of the film that got riffed while even the more uneven effects shots were passed without score… something that might feel like a breath of fresh air after some of the reactions that Godzilla 2000: Millennium (1999) got during its theatrical screening in the US.
So despite the less than top notch print, seeing the original Godzilla in the theaters was still a highly enjoyable experience, and I would suggest it to others, even if simply for the fact of getting an idea of how many Godzilla fans are in the vicinity.
One thing that has been great to see, though, is the resulting publicity from the release. For example, to the right is an image to the cover story for a recent edition of SF Weekly with the cover story being “Returning Japanese” and focusing on the newly uncut release of the original 1954 film.
As a side bonus, below is the Theater Listing for the original Godzilla during the Castro Theater’s run of the movie. It talks about the basic plot of the film, its impact in Japan and its film industry and also puts a lot of emphasis on the changes made when it was Americanized, such as the addition of Raymond Burr, removed footage and the added sequences in the film.
The movie will be playing at the Castro Theater from May 7th to the 20th. Check your local listings to see when the movie might come into your area, although keep in mind the film is being given a very limited release.
May 2 update
Rialto Pictures is preparing for the imminent release of Godzilla (1954) through out select theaters in the United States. May 7th, Friday, marks the first release of the film, which will be screened at the Castro theater in San Francisco and Film Forum in New York.
As previously mentioned, the film will be the uncut Japanese version, not the 1956 Godzilla King of the Monsters’ version with Raymund Burr, and will clock in at 98 minutes.
In order to commemorate the impending release, various newspapers from areas set to show the movie have already started promoting the film. One example of this is the San Francisco Chronicle(Sunday, May 3rd Edition) which gave the film the front cover status on their Datebook section, pictured to the right. Featured inside the Datebook section is a nice four page article on the Big G by Allen Johnson and Patrick Macias, author of Tokyo Scope: The Japanese Cult Film Companion. The article focuses mainly on the merits of the 1954 film, and also harps on the Americanization of the 1956 version, but also contains a Godzilla “Time Line” to point out important events, either inspiration for the films or the films themselves, for the Godzilla series.
There is a sharp focus on director Ishiro Honda in the Chronicle‘s article, including a salute to the dark theme of Godzilla as opposed to just making another “monster on the loose” potboiler, like the film’s inspiration: The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms. The article also applauds composer Akira Ifukube for his long running work in the series, in particular his score for the original Godzilla (1954). A quote from the composer, used in the article, appears to the left. Special Effects director Eiji Tsuburaya and suitmation actor Haruo Nakajima are also commended for their work on the 1954 classic.
The film will be screened at 33 theaters in total, for the time being, which are:
- May 7th-20th, 2004 (San Francisco, CA) Castro
- May 7th-20th, 2004 (New York, NY) Film Forum
- May 14th-20th, 2004 (Washington, DC) AFI National Film Theater
- May 14th-27th, 2004 (Los Angeles, CA) Nuart
- May 21st-27th, 2004 (Berkley, CA) Shattuck
- May 21st-June 3rd, 2004 (Silver Spring, MD) AFI Silver
- May 21st-June 3rd, 2004 (Philadelphia, PA) Ritz Theaters
- May 21st-June 3rd, 2004 (New York, NY) Cinema Village
- May 28th-June 3rd, 2004 (San Jose, CA) Camera Cinemas
- June 11th-17th, 2004 (Cambridge, MA) Brattle
- June 16th-18th, 2004 (Detroit, MI) Detroit Film Theatre
- June 18th-July 1st, 2004 (Minneapolis, MN) Oak Street
- June 18th-July 1st, 2004 (Dallas, TX) Angelika
- June 25th-July 1st, 2004 (Portland, OR) Cinema 21
- June 25th-July 1st, 2004 (San Diego, CA) Ken
- July 2nd-8th, 2004 (Seattle, WA) Varsity
- July 2nd-15th, 2004 (Chicago, IL) Music Box
- July 16th-18th, 2004 (Detroit, MI) Detroit Film Theatre
- July 16th-22nd, 2004 (Milwaukee, WI) Times
- July 23rd-29th, 2004 (Atlanta, GA) Midtown Art
- July 23rd-29th, 2004 (Austin, TX) Dobie
- July 23rd-29th, 2004 (Indianapolis, IN) Key
- July 23rd-29th, 2004 (Madison, WI) Orpheum
- July 23rd-August 5th, 2004 (Pittsburgh, PA) Regent Square
- July 28th-August 3rd, 2004 (Hartford, CT) Cinestudio
- July 30th-August 5th, 2004 (Columbus, IN) Key
- August 5th-9th, 2004 (Oklahoma City) Museum of Art
- August 6th-12th, 2004 (Baltimore, MD) Charles
- August 6th-19th, 2004 (Nashville, TN) Belcourt
- August 13th-19th, 2004 (Lexington, KY) Kentucky
- August 13th-19th, 2004 (Saint Louis, MO) Tivoli
- August 27th-29th, 2004 (Cleveland, OH) Cinematheque
- August 27th-29th, 2004 (Paducah, KY) Maiden Alley
Please see Rialto’s site on the film, found here http://www.rialtopictures.com/godzilla.html, for more details.News // May 9, 2004
Once considered a chief rival of Toho, Daiei rode high in the middle of the 20th century before hitting hard times toward the end of the century. This blog covers the fall of Daiei Studios and how the company’s major properties, such as Zatoichi and Gamera, ended up at times on Toho’s doorstep.
The “Golden Age of Japanese Cinema,” a glorious period from the 1950’s through the 1960’s when Japanese studio output was substantial and attendance sizes were even larger. By 1953, roughly the start of the “Golden Age,” Japanese cinema was ruled big six film studios: Nikkatsu, Shochiku, Daiei, Toei, Shintoho, and Toho.
It’s from this period that numerous Japanese franchises were born, including Toho’s Godzilla and Daiei’s Zatoichi. Despite a good run in the early 1960’s for many of the film studios, the “Golden Age of Japanese Cinema” was already starting to show signs of weakening. Shintoho, a company comprised of ex-Toho employees in 1947 who literally called themselves “the New Toho,” filed for bankruptcy in 1961. The invasion of television in Japan was starting to show its effect on the top studios of the period.
During the 1960’s, half of Japan’s theaters closed as audience sizes started to dwindle. By the late 60’s even Toho’s flagship franchise, Godzilla, was showing signs of slowing down, and Toho themselves announced that the series would end after one final “hurrah” with Destroy All Monsters (1968), which ended up being a huge success and the series continued. By 1969, audience sizes at theaters were down to 1/3 what they were during their peak in 1958. The cause was home entertainment, as televisions found their way into nearly every home in the country.
Surviving in the 1970’s would prove a challenge to many of the large studios, as people were forgoing the theater experience in favor of the television programming of the time. Some of the studios were hit hard, such as Nikkatsu who went on to distribute “soft core” porn (pink eiga) in the 1970’s to stay afloat. However, arguably none were hit harder than Daiei. In 1971 Daiei filed for bankruptcy and several projects were shelved forever, including Gamera vs. Garasharp. The company eventually reorganized; however, Daiei would never reacquire its distribution wing.
This period would take its toll on two of Daiei’s leading franchises: Zatoichi and Gamera. Despite Daiei’s collapse in 1971, the Zatoichi series continued as Katsu Productions, Zatoichi actor Katsu Shintaro’s Production Company, joined with Toho to produce three Zatoichi films: Zatoichi at Large (1972), Zatoichi in Desperation (1972), and Zatoichi’s Conspiracy (1973). The alliance between Katsu Productions and Toho proved successful; as they went on to produce other series together include the Razor and Lone Wolf and Cub films. This new found friendship bore even more “fruit” for Toho though, as a deal with Katsu Productions landed them the distribution rights to the three previous Zatoichi films that they had produced with Daiei: Zatoichi the Outlaw(1967), Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo (1970) and Zatoichi at the Fire Festival (1970). Despite Daiei’s reformation, Toho has managed to retain the ownership to these three films and continues to do so to this day. In 1989, Katsu Productions would go it alone with their next Zatoichi film, simply called Zatoichi. For this they found distribution from Shochiku and was the last Zatoichi film to feature Katsu Shintaro before his death in 1997.
The Gamera series, with the exception of an unsuccessful re-launch with Super Monster in the early 1980’s, was shelved after Daiei’s collapse in the early 1970’s, as Daiei’s output continued to shrink. In 1995, upcoming director Shusuke Kaneko would give the series a proper rebirth with Gamera: Guardian of the Universe (1995). The film was produced by Daiei, but distribution was handled by, the once rival company, Toho who had since become an entertainment giant and has managed a stranglehold on the theatrical market in the country, as Toho owns most of the theater houses in Japan. The film was a success and two sequels, again under director Shusuke Kaneko, would be created: Gamera 2: Advent of Legion (1996) and Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris (1999), both of which would be produced by Daiei and distributed by Toho.
Sale to Kadokawa
In July of 2002, Daiei would finally be bought out by the Kadokawa Shoten Publishing Company. Kadokawa stated that they will take over production and distribution of Daiei films under the name Kadokawa-Daiei Pictures. Kadokawa has worked with Toho in the past, with such efforts as Virus (1980) and the Ring (or Ringu) series which were produced by Kadokawa but distributed by Toho. The two media giants also had a joint production with the highly successful Onmyoji in 2001. Whether or not Kadokawa will handle the distribution of their films has yet to be seen, though, as their 2004 movie One Missed Call (2004) would go on to be distributed by Toho.
This article was first published on January 28th, 2000.General // April 5, 2004
This page features the archived log of reports given while Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee had its initial release pending. This tracks the original release of the game on the Nintendo Gamecube.
December 16, 2002
The Japanese version of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee, titled Godzilla: Giant Monster Fray (ゴジラ怪獣大乱闘), has shipped and is now available at Japanese retailers.
Also, to follow up on the previous report, the Heisei Mechagodzilla can’t be unlocked in the Japanese version of the game, and is instead replaced by Kiryu.
December 6, 2002
The Japanese version of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee, titled Godzilla: Giant Monster Fray, will feature the Millennium Mechagodzilla (aka Kiryu) in place of the Heisei one featured in the US version. No word if the Heisei one can be unlocked in it, more info as it becomes available.
November 2, 2002
Source: Nintendo Power
Nintendo Power’s November issue, #162, has a pullout Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee poster in it along with five pages of strategy on the game. The magazine also reviews the game with a panel of four testers. For those curious, the game received a 4 star average, with one reviewer giving it 5 stars, two reviewers giving it 4 stars, and another two reviewers giving it 3.5 stars.
September 28, 2002
The following is a transcript of a e-mail response from Kirby Fong, the producer of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee.
Question: First, I haven’t seen any Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee commercials yet. Am I watching the wrong channels, or have they not aired? If it’s the latter, any idea when we can expect them?
Kirby Fong: “The commercial spot is being filmed now and should start airing about the same time the game ships.”
Question: I hear that the Super-X was removed. Is there a possibility that you can give any insight on the matter?
Kirby Fong: “We couldn’t get the Super X to work the way we liked with the time we had.”
So the Super-X has been cut, and we can expect the commercials to air in a little over two weeks.
September 27, 2002
Source: Nintendo Power
Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee preview in Nintendo Power! That’s the October issue, #161. The game also ranks number 5 on the players choice. The November issue of Nintendo Power is going to feature a full review of the game.
September 12, 2002
The following is a transcript of a e-mail response from Kirby Fong, the producer of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee.
Question: EB now has Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee listed for the 15th. Are they “jumping the gun,” so to speak, by making this statement or has the date in fact been moved?
Kirby Fong: “I was told the new shelf date was the 15th. So EB should be correct.”
Sounds like we will all be getting G:DAMM a little earlier!
August 22, 2002
A demo for Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee will ship with Big Air Freestyle for the Nintendo Gamecube. The demo will be an older version of the game; in fact, it’s the demo from E3, so quite a lot has changed since then.
The demo is 2 player only, meaning one will need two controllers to play. The game with the demo will ship around 9/10/02, depending on one’s location. So one can get the demo about a month and a half before Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee comes out.
If you want to purchase Big Air Freestyle, be sure to check out Amazon and purchase a copy.
August 2, 2002
Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee has been sent to Nintendo for testing! Kirby Fong has just informed me of the news, so things look real good for the game meeting its October release.
July 21, 2002
Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee trailer now online at IGN. The trailer gives many their first look at Anguirus in the game, as well as the opening cinematic.
June 29, 2002
Source: Nintendo Power
Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee makes players choice! Godzilla ranks in at number 6 in the players choice section of Nintendo Power (Issue 158, July 2002). The players choice is a list of most wanted, or current released favorites. On top of the list is Meteroid Prime, some other games ahead of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee were Super Mario Sunshine and Resident Evil.
May 29, 2002
The following is a transcript of a e-mail response from Kirby Fong, the producer of Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee.
Question: I was wondering if you could reveal any of the other monster’s special attacks in the game (L + R), besides Gigan’s teleport and Megalon’s burrow?
Kirby Fong: “We’re currently working on moves for the other monsters, but not all will have an L+R move. This does not mean that they are weaker or not as fun, they just don’t need them. A good example would be Godzilla, he does not have an L+R move, yet he is still very powerful and effective. Gigan and Megalon was an experiment and I think it worked well for them. We’ll have to see about the other monsters.”
Question: Why did EGM list Rodan as a summonable way back when the first screens on this game where being released? Was he at some point a summonable and was then changed to a playable character?
Kirby Fong: “There was some confusion on this, but Rodan is playable.”
Question: Gamepro keeps rambling on about Godzilla 1954 being in the game, yet there has been nothing to indicate that this is true. Where is Gamepro getting this info from?
Kirby Fong: “There is no G’54. It was misinformation given to the press.”
Question: You said in a interview with Gamepro that: “We have the classic Godzilla that people have known for more than 50 years, along with 13 of his friends.” Does that included both Godzillas and 13 others? Or is that 14 in total? Also, at this point, I assume that that is not 14 playable, but just 14 kaiju that make an appearance in the game. To date I have only discovered 13, unless you count the Super-X, are there indeed more?
Kirby Fong: “There are 13 total monsters. We would love to have more, but there is this thing called development time and budget and it just doesn’t allow us to have more. We originally had plans for more, but the level of detail Pipeworks has put into their characters models takes time to make. We didn’t want to short change the game. I personally rather have a few well done characters then a lot of crappy ones. Pipeworks has done an awesome job with the character and overall game for that matter…”
Question: Is this copyright for the game final?
“Godzilla®- Destroy All Monsters Melee © 2002 Infogrames, Inc. a subsidiary of Infogrames Entertainment, S.A. Manufactured and marketed by Infogrames, Inc. New York, NY. All Rights Reserved. Godzilla®, the Godzilla® character, Anguirus™, Destoroyah™, Gigan™, Hedorah™, King Ghidorah™, Mechagodzilla™, Mecha-King Ghidorah™, Megalon™, Mothra™, Orga™, and the Rodan™ designs are trademarks of TOHO Co., Ltd. The Godzilla® character and design are copyrighted works of Toho Co., Ltd. All are used with permission. Godzilla® is a registered trademark of TOHO Co., Ltd. © 1998 Toho Co., Ltd. © 1998”
Kirby Fong: “Nothing is final until the game is on the shelves. Remember this…”
Question: Will King Ghidorah in the game be the one from the Showa series (’64-72), Heisei series (’91), Mothra series (’98) or Millennium series (’01)?
Kirby Fong: “This Q is a bit difficult to answer. It’s not really from any particular series. We’ve worked with Toho and I think it’s sort of a hybrid character. You know the best features from the set. Wait and see…”
Question: Will Rodan in the game be the one from Rodan (’56), Showa series (’64-72), or the Heisei series (’93)?
Kirby Fong: “Same as above.”
Question: Is the current look of the logo on the E3 poster going to remain unchanged? Many have complained that the uneven lettering in Godzilla (GoDZiLlA) gives the title a campy feel. Many already associate Godzilla with campiness, but this seems to go out of the way to stress this point. What are your feelings behind it?
Kirby Fong: “The Logo was designed by our marketing team, I doubt it will change. I have no comment on the Logo.”
Question: How do Anguirus and Rodan fit into the plot? Are they being controlled by the aliens like the rest of the kaiju?
Kirby Fong: “Yes…and no….. ;-)”
Question: It has been told that if enough damage is sustained to a area, the military will send out the Super-X. My question is, do they have any other familiar vehicles at there disposal in the game, like the Maser tanks?
Kirby Fong: “Eh, maybe? ;-)”
Question: Unlockables (like secret characters, levels, options, increasing level sizes that are given by completing certain objectives) go a long way to increasing the replayability of a game, in particular fighting games. On a scale of 1-10, 10 being a lot of unlockables and 1 being a few, what would you rate Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee?
Kirby Fong: “8, more if we have time.”
Closing: Well thanks for your time. Also, I would like to thank you for finally giving us a Godzilla game worthy of the name, and that fans can be proud of.
Kirby Fong: “Welcome and Thank you… -Kirby”
May 29, 2002
Cats out of the bag, all of the kaiju in the game have been discovered. Appears that Pipeworks decided to cut down the number of monsters that were going to be in the game so that they could concentrate on fine tuning the ones that are already in it (check the Characters section for the ones known to be featured).
March 30, 2002
Dan Duncalf, the President of Pipeworks, has agreed to answer another series of questions regarding the newly announced game. Below is a transcript of the e-mail responses.
Question: According to a press release: “More than 14 monsters, each carefully modeled from the record-setting movie franchise, appear in the game.” This is in contradiction to your previous reply, is this referring to the number of playable kaiju in the game, or does it include the summonable monsters in the tally, like Rodan and Mothra?
Dan Duncalf: “The ‘More than 14 Kajiu’ that are referred to, includes all references to monsters… playable, summonable, or other. And no, I won’t answer what is in the ‘other’ category.”
Question: Are you a fan of Godzilla? If yes, were you a fan before or after work began on the game?
Dan Duncalf: “As far as being a Godzilla Fan, Isn’t everybody? I mean, who doesn’t like a Giant Lizard that fights other evil monsters! Well, ok… So I wasn’t a starkraving G-Mad G-Fan attendee, but I had watched all the new GZ movies, and most of the old ones.”
Question: After looking at various screen shots it seems that the action is similar to some of the scenes in seen in Masaaki Tezuka‘s Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2001) , which was fast paced and had “elaborate” scenes with Godzilla, most notably when he jumps and tackles Megaguirus. The screen shots I am referring to is when Godzilla uppercuts (Super) Mechagodzilla, and when he is slamming his head into the pavement.
Dan Duncalf: “We weren’t trying to copy that scene when we did those screen grabs. And I can’t really comment on the pace of the game either. You will just have to wait until E3, when attendees will be able to play for themselves.”
Closing: Thanks for your time.
Dan Duncalf: “I’m sorry that I could not give you any more information, but it is being tightly controlled so various magazines can get their exclusives. Keep checking our web site, and I imagine we will build a mailing list to keep people who are very anxious informed about when, and where new information will be available. Best Regards, — Dan”
March 26, 2002
Dan Duncalf, the President of Pipeworks (the company developing the game), was kind enough to answer a few questions regarding the newly announced game. Below is a transcript of the e-mail responses.
Question: I have a few, brief, questions regarding Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee, if you don’t mind. First off, why isn’t the game mentioned on your company’s site (http://www.pipeworks.com)?
Dan Duncalf: “Because until Friday, its been a secret. We will put up a couple of links for it in about a week.”
Question: Any chance of divulging which characters are set to be featured in the game? EGM ran an article confirming that Godzilla (2000), Mechagodzilla (Heisei), Gigan, Anguirus, Godzilla (Heisei) and King Ghidorah are in. Early buzz from message boards also suggests that Destoroyah will be featured as well. Furthermore, the copyright on Infogrames site says “copyright Sony and Toho 1998”, is this hinting at the inclusion of the US Godzilla? Any chance of clarifying?
Dan Duncalf: “Not at this time.”
Question: EGM has stated that there will be 5 secret characters in the game, while Infogrames has stated that the game will feature 14 characters. Does this mean 9 regular characters, with a total of 14? Or 14 regular characters, with a total of 19?
Dan Duncalf: “14 total.”
I would like to thank Dan Duncalf for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer my series of questions.
March 25, 2002
Infogrames’ press release surrounding the game has been released, revealing the game to the public for the first time.
This article was first published on March 25, 2002.News // December 16, 2002