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Godzilla design
(1998 film)



Design Details



Portrayed by:

Kurt Carley
(Suit and motion capture)

Used in:


Design Chronology






The 1998 Godzilla design is the design used in the 1998 film, Godzilla.


Originally intended to be a more realistic depiction of Godzilla, the 1998 design is a very drastic redesign, to the point of looking almost nothing like his Japanese counterpart. The CGI model's appearance and stance seem to be based off of Tyrannosaurus rex, with certain features of iguanas and dromaeosaur dinosaurs such as Velociraptor.

The color of the design's skin is a very dark blue on the top of his body, to the point of looking black during some scenes, a silvery light-blue color on the sides of the body, and tan on the underside, as if to blend in with urban environment.

The design has a notably big underbite with a huge chin, and teeth which stick out of the mouth, much like crocodiles'. In contrast to Godzilla's maple leaf shaped dorsal plates, the 1998 design has curved, spike-like scutes,[1] curving towards the front, described as looking somewhat like reversed shark fins.

The design has powerful, long legs and arms, which enable for very swift movement; something it was specifically designed to have, as well as being able to move on all fours while tunneling.[2]


  • This Godzilla redesign was made based only on Roland Emmerich's instructions that the monster had to be quick and agile.
  • Kenpachiro Satsuma commented that 'That's not Godzilla, it does not have the spirit'.
  • Despite the attempt to make Godzilla 'realistic', a lean, slim build on a reptile his size is actually counter-intuitive. The design of the MonsterVerse Godzilla is more plausible, as it has a bulky, bottom-heavy build that realistically looks likely to support its weight.
  • Although Toho had little to do with the making of this design, they still knew what it looked like and nevertheless approved it.[2] Toho's chairman at the time, Isao Matsuoka, even said he felt it kept the essence of Godzilla, though many of Toho's executives and employees would later express their displeasure with the design.[3]
    • One complaint was that its "face looks like an iguana and its legs looked like a frog".
  • The animatronic Godzilla was designed by veteran Disney Imagineer Bob Gurr, who also created the giant animatronic King Kong for the Universal Studios Hollywood tour.[4]
  • Screen Junkies' "Honest Trailers" series expressed a complete dislike of the redesign, calling it a "box-headed, chicken-legged, no-atomic-breath-having, Jay-Leno-chinned, flat-nosed, stupid-faced piece of s**t".

List of appearances


Video games



  1. Lee, Shawn (August 6, 2013). SCUTES! Now hurry the hell up! Gojipedia. Retrieved June 14, 2017
  2. 2.0 2.1 Schaefer, Mark (December 9, 2004). Godzilla Stomps into Los Angeles Pennyblood. Retrieved June 14, 2017
  3. Aiken, Keith (May 31, 2015). GODZILLA Unmade: The History of Jan De Bont’s Unproduced TriStar Film – Part 4 of 4 SciFiJapan. Retrieved June 14, 2017
  4. Theme Parkology (April 19, 2014). Moments with Bob Gurr: Godzilla Youtube. Retrieved June 14, 2017
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