With Godzilla vs Kong still making waves at the box office, speculation on the fate of the Monsterverse lives on. Some say that the Legendary will definitely continue the Monsterverse and others say that this is the end since the rights to Godzilla will go back to Toho. While it is still unclear at the moment of what will happen to the Monsterverse, there is still one thing that is clear. One idea that was being shared around was Toho doing their own Godzilla Cinematic Universe (GCU).
Just to be clear, this is just one idea that they had. It does not confirm they are making their own cinematic universe. It is just an idea they had. However, if Toho moves forward with this idea it begs the question of what would the GCU look like.
Back in 2018, Toho's director Keiji Ota was interviewed by Nikkei Styles. In the interview, Ota explains, "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."
Ota continues, "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." Ota even shares that even though Shin Godzilla was a huge success and a sequel would be the obvious choice, he would rather make a "World of Godzilla".
In other words, it would be similar to the Showa era (1954-1975) where stand alone movies like Mothra and Rodan crossed over into the Godzilla series. This time, Ota sees a much larger roster of monsters getting their own movies that would connect in this universe much like the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). With Toho wanting to work closer with talents from Hollywood, making their own cinematic universe would be one way to work side by side with those talents.
In fact, we can already see bits and pieces of the "World of Godzilla" idea in the currently running anime series, Godzilla: Singular Point. The first three episodes of the show was heavily focused on Rodan and now it looks to be shifting to concentrate on other monsters. In the preview of episode 4, Anguirus and Gabara are set to appear. Even though Godzilla has not appeared yet, the Godzilla fossil in the bunker has already begun the build up for his official debut in the show. His presence still lingers whether he is a pile of bones or in the form of a different monster (Godzilla "Aquatilis"). The point is that every monster will have their own share of screen time that will some how have some connection to Godzilla by the end of it.
In terms of story, Toho would want a more human focused story with a nuclear energy message attached to the GCU based on their most recent movies (Shin Godzilla, Godzilla: Monster Planet, Godzilla: CotEoB, Godzilla: The Planet Eater) and in Godzilla: Singular Point. In the United States, we have accepted and expect the monsters to be the main characters where the humans are just obstacles that move the plot forward. In Japan, however, the formula is the opposite where the monsters are the obstacles and the movie's/show's story focuses on the human characters. Godzilla is seen as a god-like figure. An entity meant to be feared because mankind screwed up nature with the misuse of radioactive materials and he and other monsters are casting down judgement on the humans. They have to implement some sort of nuclear message with every monster movie even if the way the message was implemented doesn't make sense.
The only question that needs to be asked is why would Toho want to make their own cinematic universe. With Godzilla vs Kong toppling over box office expectations having currently made $390 million globally and their current plan to expand the Godzilla brand to the global market set in motion, they may as well allow Legendary to continue the Monsterverse series. Plus, all of the money the movie is going to make in Japan goes to Toho since they are Japan's main distributor. Or maybe the translation of Keiji Ota's interview was mistranslated and Ota was referring to plans for the Monsterverse after 2021 rather than Toho planning their own cinematic universe.
The only reason I see is that Toho has not released a single live action Godzilla film since 2016. Currently, Toho has been more focused on anime, tourist attractions, and merchandising. If Godzilla: Singular Point becomes a success, then Toho will continue on focusing their efforts more on animation since animation allows more creative freedom than live action. I'm sure that Toho will want to make their own live action movies in the future, but it all depends on Toho's and Legendary's decision on whether to continue the Monsterverse and if it will continue with more Godzilla movies or not. The current deal was to allow Legendary to make three Godzilla movies. With that deal complete, any direction with Godzilla is possible. If Toho does decide to make their own movies, then I wouldn't mind them taking a shot of making their own GCU. Or maybe they could continue the Monsterverse series with their own movies.
What do you think will happen? Do you think Toho is planning their next series of Godzilla movies or do you think Toho will allow the Monsterverse to continue? Leave a comment in the comments section of your thoughts on Toho and the future of Godzilla movies. Make sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Minds, MeWe, Gab, and Parler to stay up to date for more news, reviews, and discussions.