Toho Plans Godzilla Cinematic Universe After 2020, No Shin Godzilla 2
This past week, Japanese publication Nikkei Style released an interview with Keiji Ota--Toho's Chief Godzilla Officer over Goji-kon, or the Godzilla Strategy Council launched in October 2014. The council was created to help decide where to take the future of the Godzilla franchise. Thanks to Gormaru Island's translations, we have a better idea of where Mr. Ota hopes to take Godzilla next.
"...after 2021, we're thinking of a potential strategy that [releases] Godzilla movies uninterrupted at a rate of every 2 years, although there is a preference for a yearly pace as well." said Ota. He continued, hoping to expand Toho's Godzilla franchise into a cinematic universe, inspired by Marvel.
The future of the series and its forwarding developments are very conscious of the method of "shared universe". Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah, etc. could all share a single world view much like a Marvel movie where Iron Man and the Hulk can crossover with each other.
It is said that each movie can be a possible film production where any one of them could lead a film of their own as the titular character.
The idea of kaiju spin-offs that star Mothra or King Ghidorah was rumored earlier this year, but this is the first Ota has spoken openly about it. However, it looks as though a Toho Godzilla universe will not include 2016's smash hit and Japanese Academy Award winning, Shin Godzilla.
Shin Godzilla was a huge hit, but instead of thinking of doing the obvious idea of making a Shin Godzilla 2, instead think about a world that can be used for a long time, I'd rather make a World of Godzilla.
Ota continued to talk about the merchandising restrictions on overseas markets due to their deal with Warner Brothers and Legendary. However, in future, Toho hopes to do that themselves. You can read the entire translation by Gormaru Island here.
Mr. Ota doesn't mention how or if these plans will effect Legendary Pictures' Monsterverse, post-2020. Shin Godzilla co-director Shinji Higuchi said the deal between Toho and Legendary ends after 2020, hence why no one has spoken for the Monsterverse beyond that year.
Additionally, some industry insiders postulate Legendary could be in hot water with its current Chinese owner Wanda. Recently hit with financial woes, Wanda has been shedding some assets and Legendary could potentially find itself on the chopping block. Ultimately, there's no information as to how Legendary will proceed in the future or what will happen to the Monsterverse.
Toho, however, seems completely dedicated to expanding the Godzilla franchise after 2020. With the tentative plan of a new film every two years and a fresh "World of Godzilla", it's clear the Godzilla franchise will be here for awhile with or without Legendary Pictures.
Thanks to Gormaru Island for providing fans with the translation.
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May-19-2018 2:19 PM
Beyond glad Shin Godzilla 2 won't be a thing. Been terrified at the prospect of a sequel ruining the greatness of this one off film. But the idea of a GCU or Godzilla Cinematic Universe is too cool to hear.
May-19-2018 2:20 PM
A GCU. I love it! The potential for Kaiju spin-offs would be great. This just sounds like the best way to go. I would love to see a Shin Godzilla sequel but I would love this to happen more than that.
May-19-2018 2:54 PM
I have a question. If Toho goes forward with this plan, what are the odds that Godzilla will be closer to the original (an ancient monster awakened by atomic testing)? Shin and Earth are cool and all, but I want to see a return a more classical Godzilla. That's also why I can't wait for Legendary's next two films. Godzilla feels more like Godzilla when is origin is closer to one of those from the 3 original series. And I'm tired of his Atomic Breath being skinny lasers. I want the big, concussive beam back.
May-19-2018 3:12 PM
Glad I heard about this from the Omni Viewer before this forum was even made. And I'm also glad about two things:
1) A GCU. It would be so cool to have this happen.
2) A Shin Godzilla sequel not happening. There's not much you can do with it anyways.
Can't wait for this to happen. But this is making me think this: "If Godzilla is going to have a GCU (a Showa era 2.0, if you will), then does that mean we will see Gamera come back at the same time, and have the two monsters fight for the box office once again, or is the Gamera franchise dead forever?"
I think all this might happen. What does everyone else think?
The Legend of Brian
May-19-2018 4:33 PM
I've kind of made my peace that the Monsterverse probably wont continue past 2020, so I'd be more than happy to gear in for a Toho produced Kaiju cinematic universe.
May-19-2018 4:53 PM
Kinda sucks. I'd love to have two series run concurrently for like, a decade or so. You get a proper Japanese experience and a North American one. Like two MCUs for two types of fans, effectively pleasing everyone and generating a buttload of revenue. Not saying I want oversaturation necessarily, but even though we're gonna get five Godzilla films in five years (As of now), it doesn't feel bloated, at all, and think that with a good creative team behind the concept on either side of the world, it could last for a decade, easily.
May-19-2018 5:01 PM
I wrote this following response on the YouTube channel I first seen this news on and Toho needs to hear my ideas, but first Yes Toho needs to buy the rights to Gamera.
I hope Toho goes back to the roots Tsuburaya style and starts by remaking G54, a direct reboot with the only difference being that the oxygen destroyer fails to kill Godzilla (he should be completely invincible) and creates Destroyah instead, so right off the bat Godzilla is a hero that personally killed Destroyah without dying himself and used burning Godzilla as a super sayian. He is still destructive by nature because buildings should not challenge his size or they are a target otherwise he just doesn't care about mankind unless they piss him off with nukes and pollution but man can interact with him using giant robots. They figure out how to communicate with him with Jet Jaguar. Godzilla millennium is the Godzilla we need but I also miss the heisei Godzilla and the showa. With Godzilla no longer being the name of single a Lizard but a entire class of monster at this point we could see different Godzillas emerging from the depths at the same time so we all get out favourites. Using comedy could make the boring humans funny and thus making it feel less like suffering the babble of going to church. That sound effect from 89 when that dude got bonked in the head was pretty funny. Get Lucy Lawless, Bruce Campbell and Will Sasso to play the Americans and we are talking a freaking home run! I hope the monsterverse reigns supreme forever but best case here we get two Godzilla series coming out of two countries. Freaking sweet!
May-19-2018 5:40 PM
You know what I'd really hope for, despite how unlikely it'd be?
If Toho were to use this as a means of continuing the Monsterverse.
The Monsterverse is still the best chance at a stable worldwide monster cinematic universe, and I'd hate for it to fizzle out after 2020; it's still in Phase 1, to draw parallels with the MCU. As much as I love Toho as the original creators of the character, I can't help but feel anxiety and anger at the prospect of Legendary Pictures not being able to give audiences worldwide the true cinematic Monsterverse.
G. H. (Gman)
May-19-2018 8:14 PM
Honestly, I'm sort of over the Monsterverse already. If it continues fine, but if it ends with Godzilla vs. Kong I wouldn't shed any tears at present. It's thing. It's notable. That's about it.
May-19-2018 9:54 PM
The one good thing is that quality trumps quantity, G14 was fine for what it was, KSI was honestly just enjoyable fun, if KotM and GvK are at least that, fun, then I don't mind it ending. I just think potential is there for a long lasting funfest of a franchise, and it would suck to have it squandered when people enjoy it.
G. H. (Gman)
May-19-2018 9:59 PM
There's no confirmation if it's ending or not--There's just no plans. Sure Legendary might be getting a hard time from Wanda, but they also have two Godzilla movies on their plate. They're hands are full and they probably don't want to think past 2020 until those two films are locked and released.
May-19-2018 10:07 PM
"Sure Legendary might be getting a hard time from Wanda, but they also have two Godzilla movies on their plate."
That, and the reviews for Pacific Rim: Uprising (most of which I mostly disagree with because I didn't see any trailers other than the teaser).
May-19-2018 10:21 PM
@G. H. (Gman) Yeah, I should've prefaced it with "in the event of it ending", not "it IS ending". I do like Legendary's very limited approach to it, however. Just planning a few movies ahead. Not 10. Very refreshing from the "let's plan out a universe without making a single movie" approach DC took.
May-19-2018 11:02 PM
Seeing how this is coming after their announcement a while back that they want to co-produce movies with Hollywood after 2019, do I sense that this "GCU" will also incorporate North American aspects of film making? Possibly trying to hit both Japanese and American audiences?
Nonetheless, I'm honestly kind of happy there's not gonna be a Shin 2. That was a lovely Godzilla movie that ended on an ominous note; I kind of just like leaving it as it lay instead of going the sequel route with a director who wouldn't have the same vision as Anno or Higuchi.
May-19-2018 11:05 PM
"I kind of just like leaving it as it lay instead of going the sequel route with a director who wouldn't have the same vision as Anno or Higuchi."
Too bad that didn't happen with Pacific Rim: Uprising.
May-19-2018 11:28 PM
@NateZilla10000 Yeah, that's my viewpoint, essentially. It just works as its own thing, and the open ending is great for audience interpretation.
@MinecraftDinoKaiju I'd bet most people bar the most hardcore fans even knew. Not that they're not sad about it, they just didn't know, especially given she's from some of the earlier, older films.
May-20-2018 4:12 AM
At the very least, I hope that Toho will keep the Monsterverse in mind and use it as a guideline for how they could approach doing a GCU.
I mean, the Monsterverse is a textbook example of a Phase 1 done right, after all; the DCEU's films are an example done wrong.
May-25-2018 1:41 PM
So if they are doing a cinematic universe, it’s unlikely that they’ll constantly change monster designs film-to-film, y’know, as they do lol. Very interesting to think we’ll get years of just ONE Godzilla design. Sure be a shame if it was awful..
G. H. (Gman)
May-26-2018 9:33 AM
I hope that's not entirely the case. Changing up the design is part of what kept the Showa Godzilla series and Heisei Gamera trilogy feeling so fresh.
May-26-2018 7:42 PM
Yeah, I personally don’t mind the changes. I just hope that if they stick with a design, with or without minor tweaks, it’s something we can love lol. For instance, I don’t hate Shin-Goji, but for something like a universe, maybe a mix of Heisei/legendary Heisei/millennium. Heck, I dunno lol
May-29-2018 6:50 AM
I mean, Toho makes a lot of money on the constant design changes on Godzilla merchandise alone. So I can see them seeing cash cow on slightly changing Godzilla from film to film. I think they will.