(382) Luigi Cozzi's GODZILLA (1976) Amazing! But True!
known as COZZILLA
Burr · Akihiko
Hirata · Momoko
a bad idea. But it happened.
Cozzi began working for Dario Argento's production company in the early
'70s. He was hired initially to work the counter at Argento's book store
in Rome but he soon became part of the crew on various productions [assistant
to the assistant director for Four Flies on Grey Velvet;
contributing writer for FIVE
DAYS OF MILAN]. He was also tapped to direct an episode of Argento's
television series DOOR
INTO DARKNESS. In 1976, when Luigi learned of Dino de Laurentiis'
upcoming blockbuster release of the new King Kong remake,
he immediately started working on an idea of beating it to the theaters
with a Godzilla release. The biggest problem was he only had four
months to pull it all together.
Cozzi decides to release the 23 year old American print of GODZILLA to
theaters in Italy to compete against King Kong. He pads
the relatively short movie (80 minutes) with an additional 20 minutes
of unrelated segments (from The Train,The Beast for 20,000 Fathoms,
The Day the Earth Caught Fire and Godzilla Raids Again)
plus real footage of the Hiroshima bombing. Luigi transforms the original
black-n-white movie to color using his Spectrorama 70 Process [adding
primary-color gells frame-by-frame to the print, often haphazardly, but
accomplished years before 'colorization' was a reality]. A new script
is written and dubbed into Italian, composer Vince Tempera provides a
synth keyboard theme, and Luigi develops Futursound to beef-up
the audio to a bombastic shake-the-seats level. All accomplished in a
mere four months.
leads to a tripped-out Euro version of Godzilla, complete
with psychedelic splashes of neon, an intense anti-nuclear message, and
a parade of copyright infringement lawsuits. From the inception, it was
a bad idea. But it actually happened.
Italian re-imagined 'Spectrorama 70' production of Godzilla (1954),
in Italian language with English subtitles; widescreen, 98 minutes;
DVD encoded for WORLD FORMAT NTSC, playable on any American machine.
Extras include Luigi Cozzi introduction, original theatrical trailer and
closing theme sequence.