The King of the Monsters is experiencing newfound popularity thanks to 2014's Hollywood adaptation of the first new Japanese Godzilla film in 12 years. Now, Godzilla owner Toho Studios is looking to do even more with the radioactive lizard by having him star in his first anime film.
Details on the project are unfortunately scarce. As of right now, the film is simply titled Godzilla, with only a generic sci-fi teaser image providing any clues as to what the film might be about. The image shows a forest, a spaceship and what appear to be people in spaceflight suits. Godzilla is nowhere to be seen, and it remains a mystery how the character might be introduced into the story. You can check out the image below.
There is, however, a considerable amount of talent behind the project (via Anime News Network). Kobun Shizuno (whose work includes multiple Fist of the North Star and Detective Conan films) and Hiroyuki Seshita (Knights of Sedonia) are directing the film at animation studio Polygon Pictures. Polygon Pictures is an animation studio specializing in CGI animation, and its work includes Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The film's story and script is coming from Gen Urobuchi, whose work some anime fans may know in Psycho Pass and Fate/Zero. The film is expected to release sometime in 2017.
Toho registered the domain Godzilla-anime.com earlier this month, so it looks like fan speculation turned out to be correct. However, Godzilla's first anime will be a film rather than a television series.
However, while the movie will be Godzilla's first anime, it won't mark his first anime appearance. The newest version of the character recently appeared in an episode of the comedy Crayon Shin-Chan. Also, although they technically aren't anime, Godzilla also starred in two American animated series in the form of the old Hanna-Barbera cartoon Godzilla and another series based on the 1998 American movie reboot.
Godzilla: Resurgence (or Shin Gojira in Japan) has done well at the Japanese box office, soaring past the domestic gross of both the 2014 Hollywood Godzilla reboot and the last Japanese Godzilla film more than a decade ago. The film will be receiving a theatrical release in the United States via Funimation sometime later this year. Given the movie's success, it seems a given that Toho will be looking at making more films with the iconic monster. This anime film looks to be only the beginning.