Mind-Blowing Facts from the Original Godzilla Movie That Will Leave You Amazed!

There is a lot of trivia and strange facts about the king of monsters that most people don’t know. The first Godzilla movie was released in Japan in 1954 and has since been seen as a symbol of destruction and nuclear fears. However, even though you might think everything you need to know about this famous monster has already been revealed, there are plenty more interesting details that you might not have heard before. Here are 10 things you probably didn’t know about Godzilla:

Height Matters

Godzilla is 164 foot, or 50 meters, tall and weighs 22,000 tons. The reason that Godzilla is 50 meters tall is because the director, Ishirō Honda, wanted Godzilla to be just tall enough to peer over the tallest buildings. Honda thought this would build the maximum level of tension for the audience. 

Through the course of all of the Godzilla movies, Goji gets taller and taller because skyscrapers have gotten taller themselves over the years. 50 meters used to be tall over half a century ago, but it’s a tenth of the size of modern skyscrapers. 

In the American version, Godzilla is 400 ft tall (122 meters).

He is Not Actually a Dinosaur

When you watch and enjoy Godzilla movies, you’d think the movie about a lizard-like monster must be about an old dinosaur. However, that is not the case. In the first movie, he is depicted as a monster that emerged from the depths of the ocean.

A lot of Goji’s features scream dino. His stance was based on a T-Rex. The spiny dorsal plates on Godzilla’s back are also said to be based on the stegosaurus. They were said to have been added so Godzilla didn’t look like a generic monster.

Eiji Tsubaraya, the special effects guru, originally wanted Godzilla to be an octopus. Another idea was for him to have a mushroom-shaped head, referencing the mushroom clouds that are created from atomic blasts. The filmmakers decided to make Godzilla similar to a reptile-like dinosaur after seeing the success of the 1953 film, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms.

Godzilla’s name translates into “gorilla-whale.” In Japanese, gorilla is “gorira” and whale is “kujira.” This is because one of the producers originally had the idea of Godzilla being a gorilla-whale-like creature. Merge the two words together and you get Gojira, or to a westerner - Godzilla.

Three Movies in One

There are three versions of the movies; the original Japanese version, the American version, and the Italian version.

The American version of the movie is called Godzilla, King of the Monsters. It was supposed to be called Godzilla the Sea Monster.

Although the original was 96 minutes long, the American version is only 80 minutes long. This version removes a large portion of the film (including all references to Hiroshima and Nagasaki) and adds in footage of Canadian actor Raymond Burr. Burr mainly narrates the film and talks about the carnage caused by Godzilla.

There is a rumour that all of Burr’s scenes were shot in one day. However, this is not true… It took six days.

Al Ward wrote the American scenes of Godzilla. He was offered $2,500 upfront or 5% of its profit. He was certain the movie would fail so he took the upfront offer. If he took the 5%, he would’ve made $5 million in his lifetime from residuals. Ouch. The American version cost $650,000, it made over $2 million at the American box office.

Movie Magic

During pre-production, Tsubaraya and Honda were on top of a skyscraper discussing how Godzilla’s path of destruction should unfold. Passersby overheard part of the filmmakers conversation and assumed the men were planning their own destructive raid on the city. The police were called on the two men and they had to explain how they were only talking about an upcoming film that they were both working on.

As part of Godzilla’s rampage through downtown Tokyo, he destroys the TOHO theatre. Reportedly, there were people watching the movie from that theatre who ran out screaming, believing that Godzilla was actually attacking it.

This was the first Japanese movie to be fully storyboarded because the production was so complex. Godzilla looked different in many storyboard panels since the filmmakers hadn’t settled on what he was going to look like until very late in the production.

In the first appearance of Godzilla, he was supposed to have a bloody cow in his mouth. This was removed because it was too graphic. 


The King of the Monsters is an amazing creation. Inspired by the sorrows of the end of the second world war, Godzilla’s rise to fame all started with that first movie. It is a poignant bit of cinema history with some amazing facts and figures to go along with it. We hope you’ve enjoyed reading about the ones we’ve highlighted here.


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