Hollywood Gothique
LA Cinema Gothique

The Reports of Godzilla’s Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

It was less than a year ago that Toho Studios announced there would be no more Godzilla films; they said as much during the unveiling of Godzilla’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame last November, shortly before the “last” Godzilla film, GODZILLA: FINAL WARS, made its debut at the Chinese Theatre. Yet now, thanks to Monster Zero.Com, we have learned of announcement that Godzilla may rise again, very soon, in a film called GODZILLA 3D TO THE MAX.

Technically, the proposed project is not a feature film but a 3D IMAX attraction, and it will not be a Toho production; the company has granted an option to Yoshimitsu Bano to purchase the rights to the characters Godzilla and Hedorah. Bano. of course, wrote and directed GODZILLA VS. HEDORAH back in 1971.

The whole thing sounds very iffy at this point. The director’s message on the website for the project basically lists “Seven Key Sales Points,” as if Bano is still hoping to raise money.

If the project happens, it will basically be a modern remake of Bano’s previous Godzilla film (which was released in the U.S. as GODZILLA VS. THE SMOG MONSTER), with the radioactive reptile facing off with an alien monster that feeds on pollution. The original GODZILLA VS. HEDORAH is one of the weirdest films in the Godzilla series — not good by any reasonable standard, but bizarre enough to be interesting. It was made during the era when Godzilla films were aimed at little kiddes, yet it contains some gruesome images that seem jarringly out of place (as when our tiny tot hero sees some of Hedorah’s victims melt to death before his eyes).

This is not the first large format Godzilla film. Back in the 1990s, the series’ special effects director Koichi Kawakita made GODZILLA PLANET as a theme park attraction, sort of like Universal Studios’ BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE RIDE.