re: print(s) usedhttp://www.scifijapan.com/articles/2...r-curtis-tsui/
Toho were good enough to let Lee Kline, our technical director, have access to a 35mm fine grain master positive of the 1954 original so that we could create a new master, and I'm really thankful for that. I hope the movie's fans and newcomers to the film will be too. Lee actually went out to Japan and supervised the transfer, and we were all happy with what he brought back.
iirc (so don't quote me on this!) Gojira
was shot on nitrate film, and the Japanese government banned storing combustible nitrate at some point in time (perhaps the 70s? I recall reading about this in an article about the Rashomon
restoration, which was indeed shot on nitrate) so the original negative was destroyed. The Criterion booklet confirms that the negative is gone, at least.
Criterion also posted pictures of the Gojira
reels that said interpositive on them (in Japanese) back when they revealed they had Gojira
in their release plans, so the source they used is likely the best surviving source out there.
As for Godzilla King of Monsters
, they used a 35mm fine-grain print that a collector had loaned to them after they put word out that they needed a good source for their release. It's a great improvement as I think most/all home video releases of it had used 16mm reduction prints which obviously look.. pretty bad.