Millennium series: Your way

For the discussion of Toho produced and distributed films or shows released from 1999 to 2015.
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Terasawa
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Re: Millennium series: Your way

Postby Terasawa » Wed May 08, 2019 2:02 pm

Gojirawars 03 wrote:
Terasawa wrote:There was never any plan to continue the VS series. Well, except GFW: the original draft allegedly served as a continuation from the '90s films. But that was years after the series was started.


I had believed that the plan was to give Godzilla a long rest, but then bring the series back with the series following Junior, but I'm not sure.


The original plan, after 1995, was to keep the Japanese Godzilla dormant until 2005. The response to G98 fast tracked a new series, which Shogo Tomiyama described in 1999 as "a trilogy, in a different world, unconnected to the previous films." He did note that "the direction of the second and third films... will hinge on the results of (Godzilla 2000)." [Quoted from G-Fan 40, July/August 1999, originally "a transcript of a Japanese talkshow... with additional translation by August Ragone."] That's a pretty vague statement that does make it sound like had G2K been a major hit they would have continued with that direction, but I also think this quote lacks context to back that up. Later in the same segment, Tomiyama addressed a question about other monsters in the proposed second and third films by saying, "Nothing like that has been decided upon as yet. We are making Godzilla Millennium to stand on its own merits."

More relevant quotes from the same source:

Q: Why was the film not conceived as the sequel to Godzilla vs. Destroyah(sic)?
Tomiyama: I did not consider it at all for this project. Destroyah is a story set in a world that differs entirely (from Godzilla Millennium).

Q: Wasn't Godzilla vs. Destroyah supposed to be the last Japanese Godzilla film of the 20th Century?
Tomiyama: That's correct. The decision to proceed with production of Godzilla Millennium was made abruptly. Actually, we had no plans for another Godzilla movie until the year 2005. (The change of heart) came about, I will admit, because now TriStar's Godzilla is Godzilla. We had a feeling that after seeing TriStar's film, we couldn't keep (the Japanese Godzilla) silent until 2005.

G-Fan's coverage of the production of GXM was largely overshadowed by the U.S. release of Godzilla 2000, but I remember GMK was covered pretty extensively once it was announced. Unfortunately, I've lost a lot of issues from that 2001-2002 period. I do recall that a Toho executive (above Shogo Tomiyama) expressed doubts at continuing the Godzilla series after GXM failed to make an impression at the box office in 2000/2001, and that if the then-in-pre-production GMK had similarly failed that would have been the end of the Godzilla series for the time being.
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Joseph Goodman
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Re: Millennium series: Your way

Postby Joseph Goodman » Wed May 08, 2019 6:31 pm

Terasawa wrote:
G-Fan's coverage of the production of GXM was largely overshadowed by the U.S. release of Godzilla 2000, but I remember GMK was covered pretty extensively once it was announced. Unfortunately, I've lost a lot of issues from that 2001-2002 period.




Most of those 2001-2002 G-Fan mags have been uploaded to archive.org; I think #53 may be missing.

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Terasawa
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Re: Millennium series: Your way

Postby Terasawa » Wed May 08, 2019 8:28 pm

Joseph Goodman wrote:Most of those 2001-2002 G-Fan mags have been uploaded to archive.org; I think #53 may be missing.


Thank you! I found exactly what I was looking for in #54 (January/Feb. 2002), one of the mags I used to have but can't find.

From that issue, Armand Vaquer's report on GMK at the Tokyo International Film Festival:

“Producer Shogo Tomiyama had stated that the films beginning with Godzilla 2000: Millennium would be a trilogy of three separate stories, totally unrelated to each other or of the films of the past, except to some degree, the 1954 original. Each film would be a different “take” on Godzilla and other kaiju characters, allowing Toho to “play around” with the characters and see what interesting films would result.”


Also:

The “face of Toho” took a slap from his own boss last month. The Japanese newspaper Nikkei Shimbun reported Toho President Mr. Toshihico Ishida (sic) considers movies showing Godzilla fighting enemy monsters “uninteresting.” ... “Godzilla will remain inactive for the time being,” continued Mr. Ishida. Reports from Toho have suggested the Japanese Godzilla will be mothballed until TriStar produces a sequel to its 1998 “blockbuster” Godzilla... If GMK is a big hit, and TriStar doesn’t show imminent signs of moving ahead with “Godzilla 2,” Toho may well go ahead and produce more “uninteresting” G-films.


And finally, from a report on the upcoming Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla in G-Fan #57 (July/August 2002):

When Toho announced the resumption of the Godzilla series in 1999, they planned three “stand alone” films in order to determine which direction the series should proceed. By reassembling the talented team that produced Godzilla x Megaguirus, a choice seems to have been made. Whether the choice will carry over into future films remains to be seen, but for now, G-fans can be happy that Godzilla’s next movie is in very proven and capable hands.


TLDR: According to reports from G-Fan, Toho's original plan for the Millennium series was a trilogy of standalone movies, starting with G2K in 1999, with the future of the series (and franchise) to be decided after the third film's release.
Last edited by Terasawa on Wed May 08, 2019 8:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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