Hell, Dan Castellaneta has been voicing Homer Simpson for nearly three decades. Perhaps no star has enjoyed a stranger durability than Haruo Nakajima’s commitment to Godzilla.
When Nakajima questioned the SFX guru, that guy didn’t have numerous responses, either. The star recalls that Tsuburaya produced a few photos of the film’s storyboard, then said, “We’ve come up with the character, however, I’m not really sure about how it’ll exercise. I’ll just understand as soon as you get in the costume and walk around. We can iron out the remainder of the strategy later.”
The story begins in 1954 when the star has used a role in something understood just as “Project G.” Nobody could tell Nakajima much about the part. Any concerns, they stated, ought to be targeted at the special impacts director (and future superstar) Eiji Tsuburaya.
It seems that game strategy panned out– the character in question was the first-ever model of Godzilla. The beast was too grand in scope to apply the normal special results (like stop motion animation from 1933’s “King Kong”), so Tsuburaya and his new guinea pig chose for a different technique: Nakajima would use a heavy match and go HAM on some minis. Sounds enjoyable, no? No.
Nakajima studied elephants and bears to notify the method his giant lizard would move. “No one must ever see the beast’s heels,” he said. The release of “Godzilla” in 1954 introduced the reptilian horror to nearly 10 million Japanese moviegoers.
In 1973, after a profession that consisted of more than 50 films (in which he played other monsters, too, like Baragon and King Kong), Nakajima retired from the motion picture biz completely. Well, almost– he ended up operating at a bowling alley on the Toho Pictures lot. An Odd fate for one of the terrifying freaks in cinema history.
And then in ’64, twice. And so on, up until his 12th and final stomp as Godzilla in 1972.