As Godzilla: King of the Monsters is unleashing yet another reign of supernatural terror across the globe, here are 29 incredible facts about the giant beast that has emerged to be a cult sci- fi classic over the years-
We know him as Godzilla, but the fictional Japanese character’s ‘local’ name is actually Gojira. Gojira is a blend of the Japanese words gorira and kujira, which literally translates as a gorilla whale. Interestingly, Gorira became Godzilla because the makers thought the indigenous name wouldn’t be too appealing.
The name Gojira however would have been much apt perhaps if the makers decided to go with the actual envisioning of the monster as a giant, mutated octopus. Nevertheless, the king of the Monsters is much fearful in the present form as we see and know it today.
A plain old dinosaur that had survived mutations and extinction to stand out as the ultimate king of the monsters, Godzilla is indeed the perfect fantasy creature for a spin around of sci- fi movies. No wonder, the Godzilla franchisee has been so successfully, specifically for one conceived a bit ahead of its time.
The first ever movie in the now iconic Godzilla franchisee was released as far back as in 1954.
The fact that Godzilla made its debut appearence within a decade of the first ever atomic bombings is a clear cut manifestation of it being a metaphor for the destruction caused during the Second World War.
Godzilla is at least as monstrous in its iconic roar as in its gigantic appearance. The Godzilla roar was produced by rubbing a resin-coated glove up and down the strings of a Bass Violin String.
The first ever Godzilla movie leaned more towards the genre of horror than its intended domain of kaiju movies.
As a giant dinosaur that Godzilla eventually turned out to be, the scaly skin was a very obvious feature of the monster. Yet it turned out to be another metaphor for the bombing aftereffects- the keloid scar tissue inflicting the many survivors of the devastating attack.
The Japan bombings weren’t the only real life inspiration for the Godzilla series. The monster attacking a fishing boat in a scene in the first movie was a depiction of a fishing boat drifting into fallout that induced a massive radiation poisoning.
The first ever Godzilla movie was also revolutionary in that it introduced the concept of ‘suitmation’ ditching the more expensive stop motion animation technique.
Even with its massive size, the first Godzilla suit weighed an even more massive 220 pounds that was eventually replaced with a more functional one.
Godzilla was the most expensive Japanese film ever made of its time.
Godzilla however isn’t just the star in his own universe. The monster has starred in a series of Marvel comics, 24 editions to be precise, and has also fought the Avengers at one point.
Godzilla had also starred in a 1992 Nike ad playing basketball alongside Charles Barkeley and was later adapted into a comic book.
Godzilla is also one of only 15 fictional characters inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame, as a commemoration of his 50th birthday in 2004.
Godzilla is not your traditional dinosaur, so obviously don’t expect the giant to just emit a boring fire style breath. The radioactive breath emitted by the Godzilla can even vaporize a black hole. And you still talking about burning things down? That’s long passe!
Godzilla is certainly one of the most humongous of beasts around, but the Godzilla franchisee is nothing less gigantic. The series spans a remarkable 28 films, while the closest competitor is the James Bond franchisee with 26 films in its kitty.
Godzilla has been growing in size and stature throughout history. From a mere 50 meters tall (by beast standards) to a gigantic 318 meters tall in 2017, Godzilla has grown and evolved gigantically.
However intense of a monster Godzilla might be, the beast does still have some vulnerabilities. And his terror of ice is one of the most prominent of all his weaknesses.
Godzilla’s superpower also sometimes gets as weird as his weakness. In Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster, Godzilla in fact flies! Godzilla could also fly with his atomic breath as well!
His enduring legacy as a beast of terror also led Godzilla to be conferred the MTV Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996.
Japanese fans found the 2014 version of Godzilla a bit ‘too fat’!
But the 2014 version wasn’t the only Godzilla that was not much liked by fans. The monster from the 1998 American Godzilla was nicknamed G.I.N.O.- Godzilla In Name Only.
Godzilla also turned up in a cool avatar for an ad of the energy bar Snickers.
However, Godzilla did never endorse Subway and the food chain was in fact sued by producer Toho for unlicensed use of the character.
Even with speculations over his sexuality and life partner, Godzilla is also depicted to have a son. Minilla, though timid and depicted as ugly, is more of an endearing character than any ferocious beast.
Whether it be the craze or an obsession of getting all he wanted, former North Korea Kim ruler Jong Il kidnapped a well-respected director and forced him to make his own version of Godzilla named Pulgasari.
Godzilla has emerged to be such a cult classic of its times that many Americans identify the beast as a Japanese ‘person’. A 1985 New York Times/CBS News poll of 1,500 Americans revealed Godzilla was thought to be one of the most famous of Japanese persons on earth.
Japan’s Kurihama Flower Park houses a three- storey Godzilla that doubles as a slide and counts as the ultimate fun ride!
An iconic crossover with Godzilla and Batman pitted against each other was purportedly discussed but has not seen the light of day till date.