|Yoshimitsu Banno in July 2016. Photo by Brett Homenick.|
Tanaka producer who came out the hospital after the completion film preview of “Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster” told me with an ill-humored face, "It is no good to change the character."
|Teruyoshi Nakano in June 2015. Photo by Brett Homenick.|
We can safely rule out Banno as the source of the oft-repeated anecdote that he was told he "ruined" Godzilla. But I have also read that, while Banno himself may not have said it, SFX director Teruyoshi Nakano has been quoted as saying that Tanaka was angry and told Banno that Banno did indeed ruin Godzilla.
On the evening of October 9, I was privileged to spend an evening with Mr. Nakano on his birthday. During the evening, I had an opportunity to ask him about the Smog Monster controversy. I made sure to specify the two different accounts that have been told and asked him which one was correct. Mr. Nakano recounted his memory of the events, which matched Banno's version completely. Mr. Nakano went even further to suggest that newspapers may have exaggerated the story.
Given all the above, it is more than a little difficult to believe that Tanaka furiously told Banno he ruined Godzilla. We may never know exactly what happened after Tomoyuki Tanaka saw Godzilla vs. the Smog Monster. But, when two of the principals directly involved corroborate each other, you have to lend that version some credence.