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Mothra (1961) Poster

(1961)

Trivia

In the American version, Mothra's home's name is changed from Infant Island to Beiru. However, in the American versions of her next three appearances, the island is called Infant Island.
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For years it was thought that Rolisica was actually based on the United States. However, it was revealed years later that it was based on both the United States and the Soviet Union. In fact, the name of the nation of Rolisica is a hybrid of Russia and America. The name of the country originally was going to be Roshirica. Also, the Rolisican flag is a hybrid of the American "Stars and Stripes" and the Russian "Hammer and Sickle".
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A scene explaining the origins of Mothra and the fairies was planned, but deemed too long and dropped from the final draft.
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Jerry Itô and Robert Dunham both spoke their lines in both English as well as Japanese.
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Jerry Itô's slow stilted delivery of his Japanese dialog fit his character as a foreigner speaking Japanese. This was not an intentional part of his performance. At the time this was made, Jerry Ito had been studying the Japanese language for over six months and was not completely fluent.
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This movie is thought to have popularized the notion of presenting giant monsters in Japanese movies as their own individual, identifiable characters, rather than menaces who are meant to be defeated. Tellingly, Mothra is presented as more of a hero than an evil or mindless beast. This change in characterization would carry over to other famous giant monster characters, most notably Godzilla, as they would become similar to the early Western monster movie characters made popular in the Universal horror films (Dracula, Frankenstein's monster, the Wolfman, etc.) rather than the bestial and often interchangeable, generic Western notion of giant monsters.
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Hiroshi Koizumi would later return as Professor Shin'ichi Chûjô many years later in Gojira tai Mosura tai Mekagojira: Tôkyô S.O.S. (2003), which also featured Mothra.
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This was the only debut film featuring one of Toho's "Big Four" monsters (Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra and King Ghidorah) that Akira Ifukube did not compose the music for.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

This is the first Japanese monster film in which the monster doesn't get "killed" at the end.
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A different ending was originally planned where Nelson and his goons kidnap Shinji rather than tie him up. They then head for Rolisica via Nelson's private plane, but the plane crashes in Kyushu and Chujo. Senchiro and the police track them to a cave where Shinji breaks free and takes the case containing the fairies. Shinji then opens the case and the fairies telepathically contact Mothra who flies to where the action was. In a final confrontation with Nelson and his goons, Mothra ends up killing them and flying back to Infant Island with the fairies.
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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