What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Gojizilla » Mon Jul 02, 2018 12:25 am

klen7 wrote:I took these snaps the other day from the thick new hardcover Godzilla 54 (a must have - best photo book by far on the subject) - i will have to revisit them when i get home from work and see if there were any captions to explain. There are more shots of feet but these all clearly show a suit with 4 toes. You can also see the half suit in the background of the repair shot at the bottom

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Do you have an Amazon link for that book?
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby klen7 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 8:10 am

https://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/product/4063670287

It was listed as a paperback (still is right now) but what i received is beautiful hardcover. I'll post more pictures and details later today

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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby klen7 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 10:28 am

After looking at more shots, I think the suit had 4 toes for all of the filming. All of the maquettes have 4 toes and the half suit has very prominent 4 toes. There are some shots where Godzilla has really skinny ankles, which could be how the suit is situated or maybe the feet were repaired at some point? There are very clearly 3 toed publicity shots.

SO... Does anybody have video or audio from Akira Takarada's 2014 G'Fest interview? - IIRC someone asked him what color the original suit was and he said grey(!) but that they used a brown suit for promoting the film - this would imply another suit or statue (probably with 3 toes) was built for promotion. At the time i was sitting next to AstoundingBeyondBelief and he ruminated on all the brown "suit accurate" (vs screen accurate) toy releases that were now obsolete. I would really like to find a copy of this interview to verify my recollection

Right now i am leaning toward the traditional explanation of two suits (one was halved for not working and became the waders) - then a three toed statue or suit was used for promoting the film.

Skinny ankles:
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Promo shot (3 toes)
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Closer clearer image of 3 toed promo shot
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This is described as a maquette (4th toe area obscured)
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No toes
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Here's a flip through of the 250+ page book (sorry about the hairy arms)
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Gojira07 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:44 pm

this thread was worth it alone for the discovery of that book. At $50 including shipping, that was an easy purchase to say yes to. Thanks Klen for bring this to the group!
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby klen7 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:25 pm

Glad to share, it really is the best collection I have seen on the film by a long shot. I was planning to get Akira Takarada to sign it at G-Fest, unfortunately he cancelled due to health reasons.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Benjamin Haines » Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:04 pm

klen7 wrote:Right now i am leaning toward the traditional explanation of two suits (one was halved for not working and became the waders) - then a three toed statue or suit was used for promoting the film.


This seems like the most likely scenario to me, although the photo that canofhumdingers posted makes me wonder if they did remove the fourth toes from the filming suit during production, unless that's actually the promo suit.

Thanks for sharing those photos. This whole G'54 toes mystery has been captivating to behold.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby canofhumdingers » Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:31 pm

Wow, very enlightening! So cool. Well, at least we know for sure that the filming suit at least started with 4 toes.

The 3 toed Godzilla in the promo photos with the actors earlier up the page definitely appears to be a suit. Holes in the neck, wrinkles in the tail, on the legs, at the waist (not to mention the photo of him holding an umbrella HAS to be a suit...). The question is whether it’s the actual filming suit or a specially made promo suit. I’m leaning toward it being the actual filming suit with a toe lopped off. The details just match the filming suit too well and it’s well known Toho used the actual filming suits for promotions until the 70’s when they started making cheaper suits specifically for public appearances.

Here’s the GTTHM suit doing a promo in front of an audience:
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And here’s the three toed suit holding the umbrella:
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So, in my mind, the only real questions left are when were the toes removed? And why? My guess fort he latter, like others have stated, was for mobility issues (make it easier to walk), or maybe the toes got damaged. As for when? Who knows, we may never figure that out.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Benjamin Haines » Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:48 pm

canofhumdingers wrote:The 3 toed Godzilla in the promo photos with the actors earlier up the page definitely appears to be a suit. Holes in the neck, wrinkles in the tail, on the legs, at the waist (not to mention the photo of him holding an umbrella HAS to be a suit...). The question is whether it’s the actual filming suit or a specially made promo suit. I’m leaning toward it being the actual filming suit with a toe lopped off. The details just match the filming suit too well and it’s well known Toho used the actual filming suits for promotions until the 70’s when they started making cheaper suits specifically for public appearances.


I'm thinking the three-toed suit was probably a special promo suit. The filming suit for G'54 was reportedly so heavy that Nakajima and Tezuka could only perform in it for a few minutes at a time. It seems unlikely that such a cumbersome suit would be utilized for public appearances outdoors in broad daylight. In promotional photos like this one that tbeasley posted, Godzilla does appear to be less bulky and more slim in the torso than he is in the film.

Plus if klen7 is correct then Akira Takarada actually said at G-Fest 2014 that they used a gray Godzilla suit when they shot the film and a brown suit for promoting it. That would explain why it was long reported that the G'54 suit was brown, if the brown suit was the one that people actually saw in public in 1954. Maybe the gray filming suit was the one with four toes, possibly modified to three toes during production, while the brown promo suit was made with three toes to begin with.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby lhb412 » Wed Jul 04, 2018 6:01 pm

I am now more confused and unsure than ever.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby canofhumdingers » Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:00 am

Pretty sure I just found definitive proof they used a three toed suit during SOME portion of filming. Sorry for the lousy quality, but I had to take a picture of my tv because I don’t have a way to screenshot BDs. From the criterion disc, I give you a full body suit with three toes on screen:

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I’m still of the opinion (and this image only solidifies my theory) that they chopped the fourth toes off during production for some reason, that the suit in the promo photos IS the filming suit, there was no third “promotional suit”, and that Takarada’s memory of a gray filming suit is just innacurate. I mean, I just read the section about making this film in the new Honda biography by Ryfle and Godziszewski and they specifically mention how the actors and other workers weren’t allowed to see anything to do with the effects side of the house until the completed film was screened. Not to mention how well documented it is that memory (especially those from 60+ years ago) can be quite faulty.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby klen7 » Sat Jul 14, 2018 9:48 am

Keizo Murase's panel yesterday was awesome. I took a lot of notes on it, but it sounds like Kaijucast recorded it, so you may get a chance to hear it.

Anyway, Murase (joined Toho in 58) talked about suit repairs and how in the early days they would shoot around the damaged parts and it wasn't until later when production costs dropped did they start making replacement parts. So it is very possible the toes broke off during production
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Outkaster » Thu May 02, 2019 8:54 am

Man that's a great book. Seems hard to get for a good deal.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby canofhumdingers » Sun May 05, 2019 12:41 am

Really? You can click the link klen7 provided which takes you straight to the amazon japan page for the book. And it’s in stock for ¥4860 (about $43 currently).

You can order from amazon japan just like you order from any amazon site (I’ve ordered from amazon U.S., Japan, U.K., and Germany). If you need help you can even google “how to order from amazon japan” and find easy to follow guides.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Outkaster » Tue Oct 22, 2019 3:37 pm

OK I will check it out again. I tried to make note of the toes as the original was on TCM the other night.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Outkaster » Tue Oct 22, 2019 3:49 pm

klen7 wrote:https://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/product/4063670287

It was listed as a paperback (still is right now) but what i received is beautiful hardcover. I'll post more pictures and details later today

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Wonder why I can't get it. I have an Amazon account. They must not recognize it?
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby klen7 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:29 pm

Amazon.jp and Amazon.com are two separate accounts, so you may need to sign up there, but they do have english language interfaces to simplify things
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Outkaster » Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:24 pm

I will have to check it out. Didn't see how I could translate it.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Russzilla » Sat Oct 26, 2019 3:00 am

Outkaster wrote:I will have to check it out. Didn't see how I could translate it.


Scroll all the way to the bottom of the page from that link. There’s a button down there that will switch it to English.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Benjamin Haines » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:23 pm

Outkaster wrote:I will have to check it out. Didn't see how I could translate it.


At the top of the Amazon Japan homepage, there's a button directly to the right of the search bar that lets you switch the language to English.

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Like Russzilla said, there's also a language-toggling button at the very bottom of the homepage.

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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby Outkaster » Tue Oct 29, 2019 8:55 am

Ok thanks I will have to try it and set up an account.
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Re: What happened to the original Godzilla suit?

Postby gojira_fan » Fri Nov 15, 2019 8:28 pm

klen7 wrote:https://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/product/4063670287

It was listed as a paperback (still is right now) but what i received is beautiful hardcover. I'll post more pictures and details later today

Image
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Thank you for posting that book. I just got my copy from Amazon JP. With shipping I only paid $51.00, ordered it Sunday and it arrived on my doorstop Thursday. It was the hardcover edition.
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