MonsterVerse Pioneer Gareth Edwards Blown Away By ‘Godzilla Minus One’: “This Is What A Godzilla Movie Should Be”

The King about to battle a MUTO in Hawaii in Godzilla (2014), Legendary Pictures
The King about to battle a MUTO in Hawaii in Godzilla (2014), Legendary Pictures

The MonsterVerse kicked off ten years ago with Legendary Pictures’ Godzilla remake directed by Gareth Edwards. After his breakout indie film Monsters, he won the studio’s confidence and brought the trendsetting Japanese kaiju back to the big screen in the West for an original outing. Once that movie debuted, it felt like the rest of history.

Bryan Cranston looks concerned by radiation levels in Godzilla (2014), Legendary Pictures

It’s true that Edwards had other plans for a trilogy that became a foregone conclusion (at least virtually) after Kong: Skull Island, but he still was the catalyst for a new renaissance in kaiju cinema. Moreover, everything was in the right place, right time when it comes to world-building in shared universes and the formula is going strong despite perceived superhero fatigue.

Legendary and Edwards’ take also had the far-reaching ramifications of lighting a fire under Toho. After keeping their creation on ice domestically for over a decade, they decided it was time to reinvent the big guy — starting with Shin Godzilla’s monumental success. A mixed bag containing anime offerings Godzilla: Singular Point and the Netflix trilogy followed with less impressive results.

Gojira is unfazed by the military in Godzilla Minus One (2023), Toho Co., Ltd

Now, Godzilla Minus One, the third reboot in a decade — or the fifth when counting the anime efforts — is upon us. Everyone’s eyes are focused on December 1st when the film premieres Stateside and in other territories as it does big business at home. Some will go to theaters blind next month while a considerable number know what the rest are in for.

Gareth Edwards is among those who have already seen Minus One, and he is singing its praises to Cinema Today (via in Japan. “There were a lot of things that I felt were very new for Godzilla, and I felt jealous the whole time I was watching the movie,” he said. “This is what a Godzilla movie should be.”

Godzilla out for a swim
Japanese vessel does battle with Gojira in Godzilla Minus One (2023), Toho Co., Ltd

According to the film’s writer/director/visual effects supervisor Takashi Yamazaki, Edwards traveled to Japan and wanted to see it as soon as his plane landed. “Actually, Gareth Edwards was in Japan for work and as soon as he landed, he pretty much wanted to go see it,” Yamazaki recalled to IGN Middle East.

“The words I received was that he was ‘jealous’ which, as a filmmaker, is a very nice thought,” he added. Edwards wasn’t the only director with nice thoughts about Yamazaki’s work. Shin director Hideaki Anno saw Minus One as well when it came out in his native land, and the award-winning visionary was impressed.

Shin Godzilla
Gojira stands up to topple buildings in Shin Godzilla (2016), Toho Co., Ltd

“And then, Hideaki Anno, who directed Shin, saw it. He told me that it was good. I checked back with his crew, and apparently for him to say something is ‘really good’ is a very big deal. So he really liked it,” Yamazaki said. The feedback keeps getting better for Godzilla Minus One as it creeps closer to landfall around the world, which can only be a positive sign for its chances outside the Far East.

NEXT: ‘Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire’ Test Screenings Reportedly Receive Positive Reactions But Audiences Have One Major Complaint

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