Japan's Godzilla to roar back in 2016

[TOKYO] The original Godzilla is set to stomp through Tokyo again in 2016, a Japanese movie production company said Monday, in what will be the creature's first return to home turf in a decade.

Since the giant lizard first tore through Japan's capital in 1954, there have been dozens of home-made follow-ups and a few efforts from Hollywood, including Warner Bros' US$160 million incarnation this year.

But the King of Monsters - originally a man in a latex suit - has not been sighted on Japanese shores since 2004, leaving its legions of fans crying out for more fire-breathing destruction, film studio Toho Co said.

"Receiving earnest requests from Godzilla fans for its revival, we will start production of a brand-new Godzilla, which will hit screens in 2016," Toho said in a statement.

Toho released "Gojira" - a Japanese portmanteau of "gorilla" and "kujira" (whale) - directed by Ishiro Honda, in November 1954, a few months after Akira Kurosawa's classic "Seven Samurai".

The monster movie was a mega-hit, drawing 9.6 million viewers in the days before television sets were commonplace in Japanese households.


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