Godzilla: King of the Monsters was a huge sequel in a number of ways, and the biggest being new Titans introduced to Legendary's Monsterverse. Alongside a number of brand new creatures to the lore, the sequel brought in new versions of the TOHO classic Kaiju Mothra, King Ghidorah, and Rodan. Fans of the classic incarnations of the famous monsters from Japan appreciated the attention to detail when it came to having nostalgic looks for them but with a new twist, and lots of thought went into bringing these new monsters to life. During a special watch along of the sequel for Nerdist, director Mike Dougherty shared more of the process behind bringing the new Rodan to screen.
As Dougherty revealed a behind the scenes look at a sculpture for Rodan before the final film, the director explained what kind of look they were tapping into for the Titan sized predatory bird creature, We looked at dozens of different kinds of birds of prey for reference, hawks, eagles, even vultures."
As for why Rodan doesn't have defined feathers in the final version, Dougherty revealed on Twitter that the team went with more of a fusion with a Pteranodon look (that resembles the TOHO incarnation of the monster), "We ended up abandoning the calcified "feathers" so that he was more of a hybrid of a giant bird of prey and a classic pteranodon — but with burning hot magma flowing through his veins."
Designing Rodan was one of my favorite parts of the process. We looked at dozens of different kinds of birds of prey for reference, hawks, eagles, even vultures. In the end it was an old school clay sculpture by Tim Martin, a sculptor @theStudioADI that nailed it. pic.twitter.com/7KzUjmmbck— Godzilla: King of the Monsters (@GodzillaMovie) April 24, 2020
Rodan ended up playing a notable role in the sequel as the monster that isn't quite a part of the action, but serves as the driving force for the new status quo. When Ghidorah is taken out of the picture as the alpha, Rodan was the recognizable icon that bowed to Godzilla as a result. This helped put a "face" to the world accepting the new king of the monsters.
How do you think the new Rodan in Godzilla: King of the Monsters compares to TOHO's original? How did you feel about Rodan's appearances in the big sequel? Do you think the Titan will be popping up again in Godzilla vs. Kong? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or talk to me directly about all things anime and other cool things @Valdezology on Twitter!