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Toei Company is Japan's most prolific producer of tokusatsu television and adventure anime. And have created more giant monsters and super robots than probably Toho and Tsuburaya Productions combined. And Tsuburaya had nearly 4000 fantasy monsters made, last time someone counted in the late 1990's!

However, their efforts are often overlooked, because many of their Kaiju creations are of the expendable monsters-of-the-week variety. And in recent years, from ridiculously 'toyetic' franchises, like Super Sentai and its American offshoot, Power Rangers. Basically, where the villains are only really there to help sell the toys...huh I mean give the lead heroes, something to do for a half hour, every week.

Lipstick Songstress, AKA Lipsyncher - April 2008 by Enshohma  The Pumpkin Rapper - October2013 by Enshohma

And unlike Toho and Tsuburaya, Toei rarely revisits any of these characters, outside the more marketable (and largely non-giant-sized) "Kamen Rider" villains.

And their more traditional entries into the giant monster movie genre have been few and far between. With "The Magic Serpent" (1964) and "Legend of the Dinosaurs" (1977) being the only two examples that most American fans can come up with by name. If any!

Legend of the Dinosaurs and Brandon Tenold by Enshohma

But during the late 1970's and very early 1980's, Toei did attempt three different, standard Kaiju productions. Though sadly non of them ever made it to filmed completion. Yes, we're entering the wonderfully obscure World of Unproduced / Unmade Giant Monster Movies yet again, my dear readers.

Now very little information exist between these following projects. And what is presented here comes from American tokusatsu scholars and journalists Keith Akein, and August Ragone. But for the sake of fandom awareness (and hopefully, additional information to be included in the future), I'm creating an article about these films here.

King Kong by dark-spider King Kong Vs Frankenstein by Loneanimator

"Kongorilla" (1977-1978, Unmade)

A year or so before making the science fiction adventure epic "Message from Space" (1978) Toei first considered on making a fairly big budgeted kaiju film with a foreign source. Like Toho and Hammer's failed "Nessie" (1976-1979), Toei and the British company Amicus (whose perhaps best known for their series of Edgar Rice Burroughs adaptations, staring Doug McClure) were going to make a giant ape film called "Kongorilla", to capitalize on the 1976 "King Kong" remake.

It wouldn't be too far-fetched to assume that Amicus bailed out of the co-production. And "Kongorilla" was eventually dropped, leading Toei to consider "Devil-Manta" next.

Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea - Sonic Devil Fish by earthbaragon

"Devil-Manta" (1978, Unmade)

After "Kongorilla" was aborted, Toei Company went back on their own, by wanting to do a Kaiju flick in the vein of a big-budget American disaster movie called "Devil-Manta".

The film was to be about a 'giant flying manta ray from the void' stirring up some destructive mayhem. And would have been similar to the way 1978's "Message from Space" was eventually done, production wise that is.

But the box-office success of "Star Wars" in the US and other territories in 1977, caused Toei's producers to shift gears. And went from monster-disaster epic, to a space opera take of the ancient Japanese novel "Saga of the Eight Dogs of Satomi" (also known as "Satomi Hakkenden").

This concept, of course, ended up becoming "Message from Space" (American trailer presented below).

Pictorial sketches featuring the unmade title monster attacking a metropolitan city, and flying over smashed and smoking buildings, can be seen in the 1987 book "Making of Toei Heroes".

"Mortal" (1979-1980, Unmade)

And lastly in this cycle of late 1970's attempts, Toei was planning on making a film called "Mortal" around 1979-through-1980. And was going to be co-produced with a lesser known US company called Punch Productions. The story involved a 'Simian-like Creature' that is awakened by an eruption of Mt Fuji, and attacks Tokyo in a quest for food. "Mortal" was intended to be more horrifying than the typical Japanese monster movie.

Sketch Menagerie: Kaiju Unmade Edition by Enshohma

BONUS: "Rebellions" (2011, Still Tentative?)

"Rebellions" is not really a Kaiju film per-say, but is another Toei Company production that was announced in 2011, but has so far not seen completion, despite the elaborate demo reel made for it (shown below). And since it has been four years since then, I think it's safe to assume it never see said completion.

"Rebellions" appears to be a tokustsu action film, incorporating elements that are popular in anime. Such as the post-apocalyptic setting, grotesque 'cyber-organic' monsters (including a giant-sized member), and sexy heroines as our lead protagonists. One of which is played by Nao Nagasawa, who has become something of a 'tokusastu goddess', as she's appeared in many of these productions, as well as being a huge fan of the genre herself.

It must also be noted that this project has noting to do with the similarly titled, but totally unrelated 2008 film "Rebellion: The Killing Isle" (also known as "Kill").

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AndyBlueEyes Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
A shame Toei are still trying to get a kaiju film after all these years
shrodu Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You certainly like the word kaiju huh?...
Enshohma Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I have modern AMERICAN slang and 'hipster vocabularies' to blame for that.
Mrtrainfreak12 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Student Filmographer
The mortal concept sounded interesting IMHO. Probably could have made a film based off of it
Enshohma Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I have the exact same feelings here.
Mrtrainfreak12 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Student Filmographer
Indeed. Dunno why they didn't do it though
Enshohma Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
As you may know, between 1976 and 1987 was not a good time for Japanese Kaiju (or foreign made Kaiju-inspired) films. And there was many failed and unproduced attempts during this long period, especially with Godzilla's films.
Mrtrainfreak12 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Student Filmographer
I knew that, Indeed that was the case for kaiju films. I am starting to wonder if there are more unproduced Godzilla film concepts from that time period. I doubt it though but hey, it's possible (but again I don't think so)

Well there was that one fanfilm "Godzilla vs. The wolfman" but aside from that, none
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Submitted on
June 23, 2014


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