Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Godzilla And Friends Stomp Their Way To Topeka

Written By: Ken Hulsey
Sources: KTKA ABC Channel 49 Topeka / Avery Guerra

"Giant Monsters Invade Topeka", sounds like a great name for a low-budget monster movie, but that's not what we are talking about here.

No, indeed we are talking about the "Godzilla and Friends Film Festival V" which will be held in Topeka starting this weekend.

Here is the skinny:

Godzilla and Friends Film Festival V
When Friday, May 7, 7 p.m.
Where Henderson Learning Resources Center , Topeka

Giant monsters will once again be attacking Topeka during the Godzilla and Friends Festival V scheduled May 7 and 8 at Washburn University. No admission is charged and the public is invited.

Events are planned 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, May 7, and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 8, with film and trailer screenings, various commentaries, contests and giveaways in room 112 of Henderson Learning Resources Center.

A contest to see who can put forth the best imitation of the monster Japanese film star will be at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Returning as special guests are Godzilla experts Steve Ryfle and Ed Godziszewski, who will offer special introductions to the movies being shown. They are currently co-writing a biography of Ishiro Honda, who directed the majority of Japan’s early science fiction and Godzilla films, and have participated in the commentary tracks for recent Godzilla Special Edition DVDs. Ryfle is the author of “Japan’s Favorite Mon-Star” and Godziszewski edits the fanzine, “Japanese Giants.
The schedule is:

May 7 (Friday)
7 p.m.: “Godzilla vs. Mecha-Godzilla II” (1993). A nemesis of Godzilla, Mecha-G was created as a counter attack weapon, but becomes berserk when he malfunctions.

May 8 (Saturday)
10 a.m.: Overview of the Weird World of Japanese Super Heroes, by Steve Ryfle.

10:15 a.m. (approx.): “Godzilla vs. The Thing” (1964). Considered by many fans as the best Godzilla film made, featuring The Thing, which turns out to be another famous Japanese monster.

1 p.m.: “The H-Man” (1959). A creature of the Hydrogen Age conceals himself in an oozing slime and hides in the Tokyo sewers to catch and liquidate humans. The most bizarre Japanese monster of the 1950s.

3 p.m. (approx.) – Godzilla roar contest and drawing/coloring competition.

3:15 p.m. (approx.) – “Grade-A Visual Effects on a Grade-A Budget,” by Glenn Erickson, DVD savant. Erickson was a special-effects technician for the production of the Spielberg film “1941.”

4 p.m. (approx.) – “King Kong Escapes” (1968). Unites the production efforts of Toho Studios and the Rankin/Bass puppet animation organization. Introduced in this feature was the prototype for Mecha-Godzilla. One of the goofiest Japanese giant monster films ever.

7:30 p.m. - Special presentation on Japanese giant monster films, with behind-the-scenes photos, film footage and a surprise feature presentation by Steve Ryfle and Ed Godziszewski.

The Godzilla and Friends Film Festival V is hosted by KTWU TV and is made possible with support from the Washburn University office of international programs, office of multicultural affairs and Center for Diversity Studies, the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Kansas and donations from audience members.

See Also: San Francisco Braces For A 'Kaiju Shakedown: Godzillathon!'

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Burbank, CA – March 29, 2010 – Legendary Pictures announced today that they will develop and produce a new film based on Toho Company’s famed GODZILLA character. Through the terms of the agreement, Legendary Pictures has acquired the rights to produce a movie inspired by Toho’s Godzilla, a franchise the Japanese company created and has nurtured for over fifty years.

Toho’s GODZILLA franchise boasts one of the most widely recognized film creatures worldwide, resulting in a series of books, television programs, video games and more than 25 films worldwide. Legendary intends to approach the film and its characters in the most authentic manner possible. The company will, in the near future, announce a filmmaker to helm the film for an intended 2012 release. The film will fall under the company’s co-production and co-financing deal with Warner Bros. Toho will distribute the film in Japan."

"Godzilla" is coming back -- this time, with Legendary Pictures taking the lead, co-producing and co-financing with Warner Bros. for release in 2012.

Legendary announced Monday it had obtained rights to the iconic monster character from Japan's Toho Co., which has overseen more than 25 "Godzilla" films. Toho will release the pic in Japan.

Legendary said it's planning to announce a director shortly.

In addition to Legendary, producers on the new film will be Dan Lin, Roy Lee and Brian Rogers. Yoshimitsu Banno, Kenji Okuhira and Doug Davison will exec produce.

"Godzilla is one of the world's most powerful pop culture icons, and we at Legendary are thrilled to be able to create a modern epic based on this long-loved Toho franchise," said Thomas Tull, Chairman and CEO of Legendary. "Our plans are to produce the Godzilla that we, as fans, would want to see. We intend to do justice to those essential elements that have allowed this character to remain as pop-culturally relevant for as long as it has."

Legendary noted the film will fall under its co-production and co-financing deal with Warner Bros. Legendary's productions with Warners have included "The Dark Knight," "300" and "The Hangover."

Speculation about a new "Godzilla" has been active since last summer. The Bloody Disgusting web site reported in August that the project was in development.