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Interviewing Akito Takahashi On TOHO's Appearance At SDCC & Thoughts On The Monsterverse

Updated: Aug 10, 2020

As all of you may know, I was not expecting much news out of San Diego Comic Con this year. However, SyFy Wire and a blog site called Inverse sat down and interviewed someone from TOHO. That someone is Akito Takahashi, TOHO's Head of Project Management. From this interview, Akito gives his thoughts on why TOHO decided to come to Comic Con, his thoughts on Godzilla: King Of The Monsters and Godzilla vs Kong, and may have some news on what to expect in future Godzilla movies. Yet, I think some of the information is kind of vague. This is what Akito has to say in the interview.


Inverse: This is TOHO's first time at San Diego Comic Con. What is the significance of this?

Akito: Comic Con is very famous in Japan as well and we've always had an towards coming and doing something here. But it's the 50th anniversary for Comic Con and the 65th anniversary for Godzilla. We just had a movie come out in May, we're having another one come out next year in 2020. So we thought, you know, the stars have aligned, we need to be here.

Inverse: What is TOHO's involvement in the Godzilla Monsterverse movies?

Akito: So in the past, TOHO has been licensing, sort of lending Godzilla to Hollywood, and one of the things they would do is make sure the image is right, the characters are aligned, making sure we're happy with Godzilla that's been represented. And that has been doing wonderfully, so we're very excited. From this year, we actually invested as well, and we've been working on the creative side, so there's a little more involvement, which has been very exciting as well.

Inverse: Godzilla: King Of The Monsters received mixed reviews. How excited are you for the next movie, Godzilla vs Kong?

Akito: For this previous one, we were just thrilled, because it's a very different type of Godzilla movie from the ones that were coming out. It's just a blast from the beginning all the way through. Lots of action, lots of really great battle scenes, things that we could have never done that Hollywood is able to achieve.

It's very exciting, even the Japanese fans that have seen it, they leave the theater excited. That's been a really great success for us and we're really excited about the 2020 movie. It's gonna be Godzilla, Japan made, versus King Kong, U.S. made. We can't wait to see the end result is going to be, but also how it's going to be depicted on the screen.

Inverse: King Of The Monsters introduced a lot of classic TOHO monsters. Do you have a favorite you want to see in future movies?

Akito: I do believe that mechanism Godzilla (referring to MechaGodzilla) has a huge impact and fanbase, that was probably something that might be coming in the future. Personally, I love the Jaeger (I think he is referring to Jet Jaguar and not the robots from Pacific Rim), so I personally hope we can see him in the movies. It's a minority character, not many people know him.

Inverse: Is TOHO more focused on creating new monsters or reintroducing old ones?

Akito: That really depends on the creator. We like giving that control to the creator, whether they want to bring back an old character they have a very special connection too, or there might be some directors who want to create new monsters. Where TOHO stands is, we say yes to both because they're both exciting. We want to see the new characters come onto the big screen, but also the older characters be revived as well.


SyFy Wire

Akito on Godzilla fans: We know that Godzilla is a great character, we know that he's loved by people around the world, so how can we really serve our fans and even go bigger and greater and create Godzilla's universe? And what does that look like?

Akito on Legendary Godzilla: We love the Hollywood Godzilla, we think it's really an honor that they wanted to sort of remake their Hollywood version. It's so different. We're going to continue that branding and that type of Godzilla universe to expand even more. However, the Japanese Godzilla has 29 movies that have already come out. It's a very specific type of Godzilla universe, so we're probably going to see both of them sort of evolving as we go. We just love that there's two sides of Godzilla.

Akito on sequels and reboots: To be honest, it's probably going to be up to the creators and the directors. If they want to bring back something that they think is relevant to the fans and the time and the relevance of whatever we can put out there that's going to make it very interesting.

Akito on Godzilla overall: One of the things that really works with Godzilla is his relevance in our times right now and there's so many different angles to use Godzilla, in such different ways, whether it's visually or with new stories. Godzilla just has a lot of width in general as a character, so we're just really excited to see what comes next.


From what Akito is saying TOHO is very pleased with how Godzilla: King Of The Monsters turned out because it made them a lot of revenue in Japan, the Japanese fans enjoyed it, and are excited to see how Godzilla vs Kong will turn out. I think that from TOHO being pleased with the film it could turn out that the Monsterverse may get an extension beyond 2020 after all. Perhaps having two different Godzilla movies being made side by side. Like one year we see a Japanese Godzilla movie released and then an American Godzilla movie the next year. Or perhaps alternate like TOHO making five movies and then we see a continuation of the Monsterverse for another five movies. Like I said, details are sort of vague, but I think that is what he was trying to get at.

Also, Akito mentions that MechaGodzilla is a character that might be coming in a future film. He is not sure that it will happen, yet there seems to be talks coming from TOHO about using this character. I am not sure if this is hinting at MechaGodzilla coming to the Monsterverse or if MechaGodzilla might appear in a new Japanese Godzilla film. Either way, MechaGodzilla might be the next character TOHO is eyeing on. My bet is on a new Japanese Godzilla movie, but maybe it will be coming to the Monsterverse.

Do you think the Monsterverse will get an extension? Do you think MechaGodzilla can fit in the Monsterverse or do you think it will appear in a new Japanese film? Leave a comment on your thoughts on this article in the comment section on Facebook or Twitter. If you would like to support my blog click the donate button at the top of the page. Make sure to follow me on my Facebook and Twitter pages to stay up to date for more news, reviews, and discussions.


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