Sanda サンダ


Height : 30 meters
Mass : 1,500 tons

Powers / Weapons

Animated severed tissue


The War of the Gargantuas (1966)

Series // Showa

Sound Effect


Dwelling within the mountains, Sanda, the offspring of Frankenstein, lived. As a child, he was found by a mountain guide and brought to Doctor Paul Stewart's laboratory in Kyoto. At the lab, he was cared for and quickly befriended one of the doctor's aids: Akemi. The warmth of human kindness stayed with the giant, even as it escaped the laboratory to return to the Japan Alps. Finding peace and solitude in his mountainous lair, the giant grew with love for humankind.

However, during his trip to the mountains, the brown gargantuan injured himself. This tore a piece of the monster off. Taking on a life of its own, the cellular tissue made its way to the ocean. Eventually this manifested itself into another Frankenstein monster, called Gaira. Unlike Sanda, though, the creature's offshoot was violent toward humanity, actively feasting on them. Reports of its attacks spread, blamed on Sanda by an unknowing public. Frustrated, the self defense force enacted a plan to kill the green gargantuan. Involving Type 66 Maser Beam Tanks and electrodes, the military assaulted the green Frankenstein. Pinning the monster down, Gaira cried out in pain. Sanda, upon hearing the screeching cries, rushed to his "brother's" aid. Tearing the electrodes from their generators, the monster lifted, and carried, his kin away from the stunned military.

In time, though, Sanda realized that Gaira didn't share his same compassion toward humanity. After injuring himself saving Akemi from a fall, Sanda stumbled on his resting brother. The green Frankenstein had gorged, continuing to kill and eat innocent humans whose clothes laid around him. The act angered Sanda, sending him to attack his bloodied brother with malicious hate. The green gargantuan retreated from the assault, running back to the water. His reign of terror was far from over, though, as it ventured to Tokyo, traveling through the dark waters of its harbor. Citizens ran in fear from the killer, until Sanda arrived again. Pleading with his brother, the brown gargantuan tried to get his kin to turn away from civilization. The call went unheard, though, and the two giants fought.

Meanwhile, the military debated with scientists over a next move. Realizing that attacking the monsters could sever tissue, resulting in more Frankenstein creatures, an assault came with great risk. However, the self defense force couldn't let Tokyo be destroyed. As a result, the Type 66 Maser Beam Tanks and tanks were deployed. Although Akemi feared for Sanda's safety from the weapons, the military actually turned their efforts toward his brother. Blasting Gaira with the masers, the injured Sanda was at a major advantage in the conflict. Eager to turn the tides, the green Gargantua dragged their battle out to the ocean. The two Frankenstein monsters fought fiercely, drifting farther and farther out to sea. Blinded by the conflict, the two inadvertently came into range of an undersea volcano. Erupting, the resulting conflagration consumed them, ultimately taken by a power greater than their own.

Powers / Weapons
Animated Severed Tissue


Severed cell tissue from Sanda was able to take on a life of its own. This inadvertently led to the creation of Gaira, another Frankenstein monster. In this case, a piece of Sanda traveled to the ocean, theorized to have grown off consuming plankton. Reaching adulthood, this smaller, green creature heavily resembled Sanda in appearance.

Given that its an offspring of Frankenstein, it's very possible that, beyond animated tissue, Sanda also had strong regenerative powers. However, the beast never demonstrated this feat.

Background and Trivia
  • Sanda was portrayed by suit actor Hiroshi Sekita. For the child form of the monster, suit actor Yasuhiro Komiya played the character.
  • The brown gargantua was designed by Narita Toru. The body of the suit was modeled by brothers Yasuei Yagi and Kanju Yagi, while the head by Teizo Toshimitsu.
  • In the 2000 publication The Giant Picture Encyclopedia of Godzilla: Toho Special Effects Movie World (ISBN: 4873765587), Sanda's powers are listed as "Super Strength" (怪力 - Kairiki) and, oddly, "Clever Play" (頭脳プレー - Zuno Pure). The latter is more likely related to the monster's cleverness.
  • Shoichi Hirose, who portrayed King Kong in King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962), was originally asked to play Sanda. However, he was given an opportunity to participate as an actor in a different film, and passed on the offer to play the brown gargantua as he preferred a role that would show his face. This angered special effects director Eiji Tsuburaya, who barred Hirose from working on his films afterwards. This account of events can be found in Age of the Gods (self-published).
  • Originally, Sanda was white in the movie's script, taking on a more abominable snowman-like appearance. This was changed to the more yellowish brown seen in the final film. This fact is published in the 2012 book Toho Special Effects Movies: Complete Works (ISBN: 9784864910132).
  • In the US version of The War of the Gargantuas (1966), Sanda is only referred to as the "Brown Gargantua".
  • In early versions of the script, Sanda was simply referred to as the "Mountain Frankenstein". This info is located in the 2012 book Toho Special Effects Movies: Complete Works (ISBN: 9784864910132).