Godzilla: Japan planning to make new monster movie

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A still from the original 1954 Godzilla film directed by Ishiro HondaImage source, AP
Image caption,
The original Godzilla film was made in Japan in 1954

A new Godzilla film is being made by Japanese film studio Toho, following the success of Hollywood's latest remake directed by Gareth Edwards.

Toho's film will be released in 2016, a decade after its last take on the monster story, Godzilla: Final Wars.

This year's US Godzilla took more than $500m (£321m) worldwide, and a sequel is already planned for 2018.

Toho said innovations in computer graphics technology were behind its decision to revive the franchise.

The film company previously said that its 2004 Godzilla film - the 28th in the series - would be its last.

The franchise began with 1954's widely-praised Japanese original, directed by Ishiro Honda.

Image source, AP
Image caption,
Gareth Edwards' 2014 take on Godzilla topped the UK and US box office in May

However, more recent productions - such as the 1998 Hollywood version directed by Roland Emmerich - failed to impress fans or critics.

Edward's film - a co-production for Legendary Pictures and Warner Brothers released in May this year - revived the franchise.

Tokyo-based company Toho, which owns the rights to Godzilla, has not yet picked a director for its upcoming reboot.

Veteran producer Taichi Ueda is heading up the new project at Toho studios, which has launched the Godzilla Strategic Conference (Godzi-Con) - a committee aiming to reboot the Godzilla brand.

"The time has come for Japan to make a film that will not lose to Hollywood," Ueda told reporters, according to Variety.

The company is not expected to spend the $200m (£129m) reportedly lavished on the recent Hollywood Godzilla, but Ueda said Toho hopes to make Godzilla a character that "will represent Japan and be loved around the world" by the time of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The fire-breathing, reptilian monster - a combination of the Japanese words for whale and gorilla - is a mutation caused by nuclear testing.

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