Monday, May 10, 2010

Godzilla Invades The UK Candy Scene - The Chewits 'Monster Muncher'

Written By: Ken Hulsey

In keeping with articles that illustrate just how much Godzilla has influenced pop culture, not only in Japan and the United States, but the entire world, I want to introduce you to the Chewits candy, 'Monster Muncher'

In 1976, the Leaf International company in the UK began running television adverts for their soft taffy candy, called Chewits, featuring a Godzilla-like clay dinosaur called the 'Monster Muncher'.

In the commercials, the 'Muncher' would either rise up out of the Thames, or be hiding, comically, as a statue or behind a house. The hungry monster would, in true Godzilla fashion, start smashing buildings looking for a snack to satisfy it's gigantic apatite.

Of course, the only thing that could satisfy the 'Monster Muncher' were gigantic packs of Chewits candy.

The adds were shot to resemble a 1950s style monster movie, and were a huge hit in the UK and ran for twenty years.

In 1995, Leaf International, began to replace their clay monster with puppets, and then ultimately, with a cartoon dinosaur called 'Chewie'.

In 2003 a new ad campaign was launched to replace 'Chewie', but in the end, the now iconic dino would win out, now officially called 'Chewie the Chewitsaurus'.

Today, the dinosaur has once again gotten a complete make-over, and is now a CGI animated character.

For those of us here in America, Chewits are soft taffy candy, that kinda look like Starburst, that come in flavors like, Strawberry, Blackcurrant, Orange, Banana, Ice Cream, Cola, Rhubarb & Custard, and Blue Mint.

I think that it is safe to say that "Rhubarb & Custard" wouldn't fly here in The States.

Isn't it interesting how the UK based Leaf International, would pass over the countries own giant monsters, "The Giant Behemoth", "Gorgo", "Konga" and "Queen Kong" for a mascot that resembled "Godzilla".

Then again, would you want to buy candy from "Queen Kong"?

I wouldn't either.

Here are some examples of the 'Monster Muncher's" escapades from the 1980s:

Remember - "Chew For Victory!"

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the links! The 'Chew For Victory' ad is still my favourite!



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.