Sunday, July 21, 2013

Legendary Pictures Pushing "Godzilla" At Comic Con

by Armand Vaquer

Legendary Pictures' Godzilla push at this year's Comic Con has generated a lot of media buzz.

The buzz continues at
With the Godzilla experience and a panel at Comic-Con’s giant Hall H, the studio is giving Godzilla the full court press. Legendary is now moving from Warner Bros. to Universal where it won’t have access to the DC Comics characters that have helped make Legendary so successful. Instead, Legendary head Thomas Tull will have to work on finding new material that he can translate into huge franchises. If Godzilla is a hit it will certainly turn into a franchise and one with lucrative merchandising and spin-off potential. It could even result in a real theme park ride akin to the Godzilla experience at Comic-Con. If the film is a flop, Tull will have to keep looking for the next big thing.
The article laments the good word-of-mouth for Pacific Rim hasn't translated into more people flocking to theaters to see it. So far, it has earned $110 million at the box office. They wonder if the 2014 Godzilla will suffer in the same way.

However, there is a big difference between the two. Pacific Rim is a new concept in the U.S. (although it is more "old hat" in Japan) with flashy special effects. Godzilla, on the other hand, is an established character with a built-in fan base. If the Godzilla word-of-mouth is favorable next year, it could make the difference between failure and success.

The 1998 TriStar Godzilla did make money, but the poor reviews (deservedly so) ended up causing the movie be less successful than it could have been.

From what I've seen so far, Legendary Pictures appears to be treating the character as it should be: as a nuclear terror. TriStar treated it as a joke. From what little we've seen of the Godzilla design, it appears to be undoubtedly Godzilla (I like how the fans are saying it looks "majestic" and "massive"). TriStar's was nothing more than a mutated iguana who eats fish and lays eggs. It didn't look like Godzilla and didn't act like Godzilla. Legendary seems to be "doing it right" this time.

We have a year to go before we see how it all pans out.

To read the Forbes article, go here.

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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.