Ah Godzilla, the popular pop culture icon that has spawned many film and television adaptations, with countless appearances made in media, including crossover platforms such as Universal Studios’ King Kong, and The Avengers.
Now, the King of Monsters is heading to Netflix, but with a slight twist – the prehistoric sea monster is set to revisit its Japanese roots in the form of anime, a first in its entire film history.
Titled Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters, the movie is the first of an animated trilogy from Toho, and has recently completed its theatrical run in Japan. Next in its plans would be global distribution across 190 countries, and Netflix Japan has confirmed the date to be January 17 in a tweet.
— 映画『GODZILLA 怪獣惑星 』 (@GODZILLA_ANIME) January 7, 2018
With renowned anime writer Gen Urobuchi holding the reins, viewers are definitely in for a treat, especially where storytelling, character growth, and pacing are concerned. Based on his past portfolio of well-received works like Psycho-Pass, Fate/Zero, and Madoka Magica, it’s safe to assume that some plot twists, and tons of gore would probably be in store as well.
Alongside the official announcement, a new trailer reel for the show was also released on the same day. Chock-full of breathtaking visuals and slick action scenes, it seems to be a fine retelling of an age-old narrative, with the perfect blend of sci-fi and fantastical elements.
To top it off, the production is backed by a slew of strong voice artistes, with Yuki Kaji (Eren Jaeger, Attack on Titan), Takahiro Sakurai (Cloud Strife, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children), Mamoru Miyano (Light Yagami, Death Note), Junichi Suwabe (Viktor Nikiforov, Yuri!!! on ICE), Kana Hanazawa (Angel, Angel Beats!), and Tomokazu Sugita (Joseph Joestar, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) in the lineup.
The film is shaping up to be a good stage for the further development of its sequel Godzilla: Battle Mobile Breeding City. Set in the same dystopia, the latter features the Mecha Godzilla – the coolest Kaiju rival of Godzilla – in a despairingly sombre future where the remaining humans are preparing for the ultimate fight against the destructive sea monster.
According to the official website, the synopsis of Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters reads:
The planet is beset by the emergence of colossal creatures that roam the earth, and king among them is “Godzilla”. For half a century, these beasts engage in ferocious battles with each other and mankind. But humans, unable to compete, prepare for exile from their home planet. In the year 2048, a select few humans are chosen by the central government’s artificial intelligence infrastructure to set out on an interstellar emigration vessel, the Aratrum, on an 11.9-lightyear journey for the planet Taue in the Cetus constellation. But when they arrive after 20 years of space travel, the remnants of mankind find the environmental conditions on Tau-e to be much different than expected, and basically uninhabitable by humans.
One youth on board the emigration vessel, Haruo, had seen his parents killed by Godzilla before his eyes when he was only 4 years old. Ever since, he has thought of nothing but returning to Earth to defeat Godzilla. With the doors to emigration now closed, Haruo and other crew spearhead a “return to Earth” decision despite severely attenuated and hazardous conditions on board for such a long trip back.
Somehow, the Aratrum makes the return journey in one piece, but the home they return to has become an alien planet. 20,000 years have elapsed, and a new ecosystem has emerged with Godzilla atop the food chain. Can mankind take back its native planet? Will Haruo get his revenge?
Well, we certainly hope he does, but since it’s Urobuchi, we wouldn’t put it past him to deliver a shocking twist of an ending.