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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Godzilla 2014 Writer Frank Darabont Interview

Recently Godzilla 2014 writer Frank Darabont (Shawshank Redemption) was interviewed on i09. He promises to return Godzilla to his roots as a terrifying force of nature and gives some tantalizing clues about Legendary's Godzilla reboot film and the story.

In the interview he talks about Godzilla's origins in film, he says:

"What I found very interesting about Godzilla is that he started off definitely as a metaphor for Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And some of the atom bomb testing we were doing in the South Pacific in the subsequent years. The giant terrifying force of nature that comes and stomps the shit out of your city, that was Godzilla. Filtered through the very fanciful imaginations of the Japanese perception."

He then says how Godzilla quickly became a protector of Japan fighting other monsters in subsequent films, a change he never understood. (Obviously, he's not a big fan of Godzilla as a series, except for the original.)

He then states that the new film will have a very serious tone and not be "campy".

"We want this to be a terrifying force of nature."

He says his job is introducing a very "compelling" human story in an extreme situation.

However, Godzilla as a metaphor for the atomic bomb is a bit outdated today. When asked if Godzilla would be connected to a contemporary issue, he said yes, but would say no more.

I like Darabont's take on Godzilla, but a few things are misleading and need to be put in perspective. First of all, reading the interview gives the impression he developed the story virtually by himself, but keep in mind, Darabont is the 5th writer to work on the script. It was reported that Max Borenstein, writer #3(Seventh Son),  will receive screen credit for the script with story credit going to David Goyer,#2 (Dark Knight trilogy and Man of Steel). Darabont and Drew Pearce, #4 (Iron Man 3) will share writing credit with Borenstein.

Second, Darabont seems to have a distain for Godzilla fighting other monsters, but Legendary already announced that there will be two more, all new monster co-stars in the film. It seems there will be a lot going on in this movie with introducing Godzilla as a terrifying force of nature in the first half of the film and then changing him to a savior battling two other opponents in the second half, all the while offering a "compelling" human drama. Can Legendary and director Gareth Edwards pull it off?

Overall, his comments are very exciting and make me hopeful for a great film. I still believe that G-fans can be assured that Godzilla 2014 is in the right hands and will deliver.

Also, there was another very interesting tidbit perhaps not so accidentally dropped but fellow interviewee, actor and writer, Sam Witwer who asked about Godzilla's metaphor and said he was currently rewriting Mothra. Mothra! This is the first I've heard of this. Is there also a Mothra reboot in our future? Well, if things go well for Godzilla, I wouldn't be surprised. With Pacific Rim coming out later this year, the writing is on the wall. Giant monster movies are the next big thing in sci-fi and fantasy films.

Visit io9 for the full interview

Legendary's Godzilla will stomp into theaters on May 16. 2014.


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