PHOTOS BY STAR ACE / X-PLUS. Produced with the permission of The Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation (Charity Number SC001419).
If you’ve grown up watching Showa Godzilla on television, you’re probably not a stranger to works of visual effects and stop motion animation master, Ray Harryhausen. He started learning his craft from Willis O’Brien (the man who brought the original 1933 Kong to life) and has since created dozens of creatures for movies like One Million Years B.C. (1966), The Valley of the Gwangi (1969) and all of those awesome Sinbad movies from the 60s and 70s.
X-Plus occasionally veers from Godzilla to take on other franchises like they did in the early 2000s with a collection of creatures created by Ray Harryhausen. Back then, the quality was a mixed bag since X-Plus didn’t start to release super, movie-accurate sculpts until about 2009.
If you’ve been wishing X-Plus would take another stab at Ray’s monsters, the time has finally come. X-Plus is again producing vinyls based on Harryhausen’s legacy, but they will come under the Star Ace banner. Star Ace is a subsidiary of X-Plus. And because of X-Plus’ heavy involvement, you can consider these new Star Ace figures to be on par with the rest of your X-Plus collection.
Star Ace has already taken preorders for two upcoming vinyls based on dinosaurs from the aforementioned Hammer film One Million Years B.C. (1966). Impending releases include the Allosaurus and Triceratops seen in that movie. They’ve also announced the Ceratosaurus which is also in the works. There are links to more information on those at the bottom of this article.
THIS NEW DIRECTION JUST GOT BETTER
If you were pleased at the chance to acquire these high-end Harryhausen dinos, you’ll be glad to know there’s even more in the works. Star Ace and X-Plus have recently announced two more of Ray’s more fantastical creations…
Star Ace 30cm Soft Vinyl Series Ymir (20 Million Miles to Earth)
Introducing the upcoming Star Ace 30cm Soft Vinyl Series Ymir. This vinyl will be based on the sci-fi film 20 Million Miles to Earth (1957). In this classic, an egg sack containing a baby Ymir makes its way to earth via returning Air Force mission to Venus. The ship crashes and the Venusian creature starts to grow and wreak havoc.
There are no more details to report at this time concerning price, preorder start and expected release date. There is also no word on whether or not there will be a Standard and Exclusive option. That’s the one downside to early teases like this one. Stay tuned for more information as it comes in.
Star Ace 30cm Soft Vinyl Series Cyclops (7th Voyage of Sinbad)
Ray Harryhausen brought the mythical Cyclops to life in the 1958 classic The 7th Voyage of Sinbad. And now Star Ace and X-Plus are bringing that creation to life for your collection.
And that’s really all there is to say at this point. We’ll have to wait for Star Ace and X-Plus to release more details at a later date. By my estimation, that date isn’t very far off considering that they already have production photos of the painted prototypes in hand.
Want More Star Ace Ray Harryhausen Vinyls?
These first five entries into Star Ace’s Ray Harryhausen collection really only just scratch the surface of the possibilities. Kali, the Minotaur, Mighty Joe Young, Talos, the Kraken and so much more.
If we’re to get more entries into this series, then this series needs to be successful right out of the gate. X-Plus got pretty far with their selection almost 20 years ago. Let’s hope this line is just as successful. Please share a link to this post on social media so that we can reach the legions of Harryhausen fans out there who haven’t been introduced to Star Ace and X-Plus yet.
As was already mentioned, I will post new information on these releases and where to get them as it becomes available.
And if you’re curious about the 20-year-old X-Plus versions, you can see a list of what was made over at KaijuBattle.net.
By John Stanowski Originally posted August 6th, 2020 on Kaiju Addicts.
A New Kong: Skull Island Vinyl with more Dynamic Sculpt is on the way
Star Ace and X-Plus have been working on a Kong V2 for almost a year now and it’s finally been made public.
The unpainted prototype of the Star Ace Kong: Skull Island “Fighting Version” was first revealed at the Shanghai CCG Expo 2019 last week.
X-Plus ‘showrunner’, Gee Okamoto, flew to Chicago and today revealed the painted prototype at the Summit Kaiju panel at G-Fest.
This new fighting version features Kong in a more dynamic pose with his arms outstretched and a gaping mouth in full roar revealing exquisite detail on the teeth and fangs.
Also new is Kong’s stance. While the original’s feet stood side by side, the new version has one leg further back from the other. Here’s hoping this thing is well balanced.
The figure will be the same size as the original Star Ace Kong: Skull Island vinyl which was released last summer. And it will display perfectly alongside your X-Plus 30cm Series figures.
Star Ace, a subsidiary of X-Plus, will again be the one to put the figure out. But know that this is totally produced by Gee Okamoto and X-Plus.
HOW MUCH? WHERE CAN I GET IT?
It’s still very early to discuss this, but it’s probably safe to say that the price will be at least comparable to the Kong V1 release. Please realize, though, that the figure’s outstretched hands means that it will come in a larger box which could very well affect the cost.
Star Ace is still currently providing their releases to Diamond Comic Distributors for the North American market. If nothing changes by the time this fighting-pose Kong gets released, then you will be able to get one from your local comic shop as well as through the usual online shops.
None of this confirmed yet so please stay tuned. Now that X-Plus has their own U.S. based web store it would be nice if collectors could order directly from there. I’ll work hard to get the facts as soon as I can.
No word yet on the possibility of a deluxe version.
Nothing is confirmed yet, but Star Ace and X-Plus hope to get the figure out by the end of the year.
Here are a few photos from X-Plus of the unpainted prototype. The light clay color makes it easier to see some of the detail which the painted version is hiding.
A WORD ON THE ORIGINAL
If you’re new around here and missed the news, here is some information on the original release. The first Star Ace Kong: Skull Island vinyl figure was released last summer and features a badass pose taken straight from the Apocalypse Now-esque shot from Kong: Skull Island where he first faces off a swarm of army choppers.
A Deluxe Version came with a closed left hand which held onto a downed chopper from another scene. It also included a base with Skull Island motif.
The original has long SOLD OUT at Star Ace. But some stock still remains at scattered online stores and shops. If you prefer the original ‘pissed off’ Kong, or if you are an X-Plus / Legendary completist, you should grab one while you can.
By John Stanowski Originally posted July 13th, 2019 on Kaiju Addicts.
This past weekend at Super Festival, X-Plus revealed images from a conceptual digital sculpt for Favorite Sculptors Line Iris, the tentacled monster from Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris (1999).
The figure is still in development but we do have these amazing ZBrush renders to look at created by Dopepope for X-Plus.
No word on when this will release yet. But, you can read up on how it came to be by visiting the Interview over at KaijuBattle.net.
By John Stanowski Originally posted September 25th, 2018 on Kaiju Addicts.
Today at Super Festival in Japan, X-Plus showcased painted prototypes of their upcoming Star Wars Holochess figures. These were first revealed in 2017 (although this is the first time I’m reporting about them here on KaijuAddicts.com).
All eight creatures from the holographic chess game (Dejarik) as seen onboard the Millennium Falcon in the original Star Wars (1977) will be made available from X-Plus.
X-Plus seems to have had access to detailed images of each character. These materials are still somewhat fresh since each creature was recreated at Phil Tippet Studios for their encore appearance in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015).
The original rubber puppets had degraded over the past 40 years. But Phil and his team were able to scan them using a process called photogrammetry to create accurate new 3D models which were then 3D printed, cast, and molded in silicone to be animated, again by hand, for the new trilogy. An original armature used for “Mr. Big” (that guy in the lower right of the photo) was used to scale the new puppets to the same size as those made in the 70’s.
This process no doubt provided more than ample source material for X-Plus to recreate them, yet again, in vinyl.
These new vinyls are not 1:1 scale as seen in the movies but, instead, appear to be nearer the size of the actual puppets.
According to the placards on the table, X-Plus will release two a month starting in April and ending in July. You can see the order in which they’ll be released in the photo. The top right and lower right are expected to be released in April. Then, going right to left, the next two. Then the next two, etc.
No word on price yet. But since we’re looking at an April release, pre-orders (along with more information) should be coming around fairly soon.
Let’s hope that this new direction or X-Plus is successful. Who knows? Perhaps this could prompt them to pursue a line of proper Star Wars creatures like TaunTauns, Dewbacks, Wampa Ice Creatures and Rancors. Can you freaking imagine that? Fingers crossed!
By John Stanowski Originally posted January 7th, 2018 on Kaiju Addicts.
Haruo Nakajima Passes Away
It is with overwhelming sadness we report that Haruo Nakajima has passed away on August 7, 2017 at the age of 88. More than anything else, he loved to meet and spend time with his fans, and we are very fortunate to have so many wonderful memories of those times when he visited with all of us. Our deepest condolences to his dear daughter, Sonoe Nakajima.
– Jim Cirronella
By John Stanowski Originally posted August 7th, 2017 on Kaiju Addicts.
X-Plus Unveils New, Upcoming Vinyls At Summer Wonder Festival, Including A Skull Island Kong, A Gigantic Godzilla 1964, GMK Baragon And More!
This past Sunday at Summer Wonder Festival in Chiba, Japan, X-Plus revealed several new vinyls for the first time. And all of them were nice surprises.
30CM SERIES KONG
Woah! One of the bigger highlights of the display was a 30cm Series Kong based on the monster from this year’s Kong: Skull Island.
A very early prototype stood in the center of the X-Plus booth celebrated with a huge banner behind it. Seems we’re not the only ones excited about this release.
Kong stands with one open hand and one fist draped to his sides while he looks off into the distance with an unhappy expression. One can’t help but wonder if the RIC exclusive version may be an alternate roaring head. It’s far too early to know right now. The details of the RIC version are still being considered.
There is no word on a release date nor a price. Keep visiting Kaiju Addicts for more details as they come in.
GIGANTIC SERIES GODZILLA 1964
Standing tallest on the table beside Kong was a new prototype for a Gigantic Series Godzilla 1964. We had no warning of this so it’s truly a nice surprise. This is why we love Wonder Festival.
One thing to note on this figure is the way the tail wraps around the side just as on the Gigantic Series Godzilla 1962. No doubt this helps reel in the size of the shipping box. But it also helps us when it comes time to display the big badass.
Note: the tail on this figure is raised a good inch or two above the shelf and will come with a tail base.
No word or price or release date yet.
LARGE MONSTER SERIES GMK BARAGON AND GMK MOTHRA SET
Many of us have been clamoring for a GMK Baragon for quite a while now. All I can say is, it’s about time!
Baragon looks FANTASTIC! It’s hard to tell, though, if he’s in scale with the Large Monster Series Godzilla 2001. (He looks large in some photos, small in others.)
Mothra looks pretty small. But, she was small in the movie so this is actually an excellent size for the figure. It’s frozen in flight, supported by a base and metal pole just like its predecessors, the Large Monster Series Mothra Imago 1961 and 1964. (Just a lot smaller).
This set is a part of the Large Monster Series “Favorite Sculptors Line”. I have no clue what that means. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that these vinyls will be based on previously released kits. Whatever. They’re just new 25’s to me and that’s all I need.
With the release of this set, X-Plus completes yet another movie monster line-up.
It’s a shame that it’s been seven years since the Large Monster Series Godzilla 2001 had been released. Many newer collectors have yet to add him to their collections.
A fantastic substitute, and I would argue a better choice, would be the Large Monster Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Godzilla 2001. Not only is it an inch taller which makes it scale better with the GMK King Ghidorah, it’s readily available to buy right now.
But keep this in mind: lately it’s been X-Plus’ modus operandi to reissue older figures to pair up with newer releases from the same movie. And since it’s been a long 7 years since Godzilla was released, it’s not unreasonable to assume a reissue may be on the way.
This set is expected to be released in November so pre-orders will open in a month or so.
LARGE MONSTER SERIES SPACE GODZILLA AND BABY GODZILLA
Also on display was a new, unpainted set of prototypes for a Large Monster Series Space Godzilla and Baby Godzilla.
I’m not sure what’s going on here, but that SG sure does look stylized. Hard to tell without the paint apps, but, yeah, it looks a bit fancy to be movie accurate. And that’s weird. So far, X-Plus has done stylized sculpts only with the Gigantic Series.
On the other hand, Baby Godzilla looks reasonably movie accurate. I’m going to assume this smaller figure will be the RIC Exclusive extra.
No word on price, but these figures are set to come out this October.
GIGANTIC SERIES ULTRASEVEN
X-Plus revealed a Gigantic Series Ultraseven. This big guy is the second in the series and follows the original 1966-1967 Gigantic Series Ultraman which is about 19.5 inches tall. Ultraseven here will probably be a tad taller because of that Eye Slugger on his head.
No word on price or release date.
NEW LARGE MONSTER SERIES ULTRAS
Look, I am a HUGE Ultraman fan. Though, I tend to stick with the original series. I really don’t know what we’re looking at here. I don’t even recognize most of these guys I’m just going to hand the mic over to X-Plus Ultra collector and super expert, Vince Elliot.
Wonderfest revealed FOUR new sculpts coming to the Large Monster Series Ultraman line. The X-Plus table introduced two brand new sculpts for the Return of Ultraman, or Ultraman Jack series. The first sculpt we see is the Meteorite amphibian kaiju, Zagoras (not yet painted) in 25cm scale.
The next inclusion in the Return of Ultraman series is the 25cm Leogon. The very monster that inspired Biollante. In fact, the episode was written by Shinichiro Kobayashi, the same person who wrote the storyline for Godzilla vs. Biollante. The crawling figure is seen painted, and looks to be slated for an October release.
The Ultraman Ace line continues to produce amazing figures. The next in the series is the daunting King Crab (not yet painted) in 25cm scale. With a unique tail design, this figure will surely be a shelf hog, he also looks to have great size. The final Ultra X-Plus teased was the 25cm Alien Katan (not yet painted) for the growing Ultraman Taro line-up. Katan was a formidable foe and will look amazing along with your Ultraman Taro line-up.
X-Plus is going full speed with the Ultra series, with seemingly two releases pumping out each month. And, if Wonderfest tells us anything, they’re definitely not slowing down anytime soon.
– VINCE ELLIOT
TOHO 30CM SERIES GODZILLA 2016 THIRD FORM
For the first time, we got a look at what the upcoming Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 2016 Third Form vinyl looks like with it’s prototype paint apps.
We also have a date and a price. This figure will go for ¥19,980 (about $181 USD) and is expected to release in November. (Same month as the GMK set! Save that money!)
TOHO LARGE MONSTER SERIES GODZILLA 2016 SECOND FORM
We’ve seen completed pics of the X-Plus Kamatakun already. We’ve got a date for release now. This figure is coming in October.
GIGANTIC SERIES GODZILLA 2016 FOURTH FORM
Also on display were the Gigantic Series (Shin) Godzilla 2016 Standard and RIC versions.
What’s puzzled some collectors are their solid red (standard) and red and clear (RIC) looks. I’ve noticed that some collectors are under the impression that these are new versions in fun & fruity colors. Nope.
The figures will be molded in red vinyl and painted over with black. A small percentage of the red vinyl will be left unpainted in order to create that red glowing-in-the-cracks look from the movie. As for the RIC, some of the parts will be molded in translucent vinyl and that’s the white bits you’re seeing.
So why are they showing these figures off in the nude? My guess is that’s all they have to show right now. The painted prototypes are more than likely at the factory. X-Plus leader, Gee Okamoto, was in China just about a couple of weeks ago and I’m assuming he took the painted prototypes there to leave as a sample for the production painters.
So, sorry, no red or red and glowie Gigantic Shins for you.
30CM SERIES GODZILLA 1989 RE-ISSUE WITH MINI ROSE FORM BIOLLANTE
The Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 1989 Ric Boy Exclusive version will be reissued. Like its original Japanese release in 2012, this figure will come with a mini Rose Form Biollante figure (which is 4.25 inches tall).
You may think this to be an odd choice for a reissue since X-Plus put out a North American reissue just a couple of years ago. But, remember, it’s been five long years since Japanese collectors have had a chance to grab this one.
Pre-orders for this figure have not opened yet, but when they do, it will run you ¥22,000 (about $199 USD!). This figure expected to ship this November.
LARGE MONSTER SERIES DESTOROYAH RIC
Got your eye on that reissue of that Large Monster Series Destoroyah? It’s an upcoming reissue with new, nighttime paint scheme and lights in the eyes and horn.
Also on display were the already released Deforeal versions of the Shin Godzilla second and fourth forms as well as new entries, the Fourth Form roaring version and Third Form and, surprise, a 1954 Train Biter.
By John Stanowski Originally posted July 31st, 2017 on Kaiju Addicts.
Today, X-Plus is displaying a lot of new figures at Winter Wonder Festival 2017 in Chiba, Japan. The biggest story here is, of course, the upcoming Gigantic Series Shin Godzilla.
As you can see, this new Shin is very stylized just like the Gigantic GMK and Burning Godzilla.
If you look closely at the first photo, you’ll see an alternate head in front of the figure. This could be the RIC Exclusive. There are photos of the prototype with this closed mouth head on in the photos below.
EARLY PHOTOS OF THE GIGANTIC SHIN GODZILLA
These early photos show the figure being worked on and aren’t as complete as the one at Wonder Festival. But they do give you a closer look at the detail and also what’s going on with that tail.
Now back to Wonder Festival…
SHIN GODZILLA: STAGE 2 AND STAGE 3
Also on display were a Large Monster Series Shin Godzilla Stage 2 and a 30cm Series Shin Godzilla Stage 3.
30CM YUJI SAKAI SHIN GODZILLA
Not enough Shin? There’s more: the 30cm Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Shin Godzilla was announced with only a sign. Fortunately, the figure was at the show, at Mr. Sakai’s booth.
This will be released as a pricey limited edition (60) resin kit. Later on, X-Plus will put it out in vinyl as a 30cm Series figure (possibly Summer?)
LARGE MONSTER SERIES GODZILLA 2004
The upcoming Large Monster Series Keizer Ghidorah painted prototype with a newly announced Large Monster Series Godzilla 2004 to go with it.
GABARA! RIC MINYA!
A painted version of the upcoming Large Monster Series Gabara with an unpainted Minya. Looks like Minya might be the RIC exclusive?
LARGE MONSTER SERIES KING GHIDORAH
Here is the Large Monster Series Godzilla 2001 pitted against the upcoming Large Monster Series King Ghidorah 2001. You can better see the RIC exclusive glitter effect in the second photo.
WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS BUSTS
Again, no word on when most of this is coming out or even going up for pre-order. And, so, we wait.
2017 is going to be a kickass year for X-Plus.
By John Stanowski Originally posted February 18th, 2017 on Kaiju Addicts.
X-Plus revealed a prototype of an upcoming Large Monster Series Gabara on their table at Super Festival 73 in Tokyo this weekend (Sunday, January 8).
Gabara is the bully from All Monsters Attack (ゴジラ•ミニラ•ガバラ オール 怪獣大進撃), 1969. Many collectors have been clamoring for this for a long time now. Once again, X-Plus delivers.
Gabara is expected to be released in June 2017. No word yet on price.
Getting second bill on the table was a variant of the Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 1999 from Godzilla 2000: Millennium (ゴジラ2000 ミレニアム).
The original release came out in Japan in December 2013 and a North American reissue (of the original) is expected to be released through Diamond Distributors this month in the U.S.
This new variant (to be available in Japan) sports a modified head sculpt with open mouth (it was closed on the original release) and translucent fins tinted a reddish orange to mimic Godzilla’s look as he prepares to unleash his atomic breath. Also, it appears in this photo that this figure has reddish-brown highlights over its asphalt black skin.
This new version of G’99 is expected to be released in Japan in May 2017 for ¥20,000 (currently $171 USD).
Also on display were UltraSeven foe, Alien Mephilas 2 which is due out in March 2017 for ¥14,904 ($127), the Final Wars Kaiser Ghidorah (still unpainted) also due out in March 2017 (no price yet) and the painted prototype of the Toho Large Monster Series Titanosaurus which is available for preorder now from the RIC store for ¥15,012 ($128). A Standard version should be available for preorder soon at SRP ¥14,580 ($125).
Both versions of the new Toho Large Monster Series Shin Godzilla were also on display.
GIGANTIC SERIES GODZILLA 1995 SOFT VINYL KIT
X-Plus made an unpainted kit version of their Gigantic Series Godzilla 1995 (the FOURTH incarnation of this figure!) available at Super Festival. It was sold for ¥25,000 ($214 USD) and allowed only one purchase per person.
No word yet on if there were any leftovers after the show for online sales.
SPECIAL THANKS to KYLE YOUNT (of the KaijuCast) for all of the Super Festival table photos on this post!
By John Stanowski Originally posted January 7th, 2017 on Kaiju Addicts.
X-Plus was at the Miyazawa Model Exhibition yesterday where they revealed a few new vinyls set to come our way in March 2017. The samples have not yet been painted, but that just lets us focus more on these amazing new sculpts of Burning Godzilla, Titanosaurus and Kaiser Ghidorah.
Preorders will be taken early in 2017.
Today, X-Plus has moved the show to Tokyo Comic Con where X-Plus vinyl boss, Gee Okamoto, was kind enough to send some photos our way.
Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 1995
This section is a fully authorized reposting of articles from Kaiju Addicts, why, because in time Kaiju Addict will be going away in the near future and we wanted to persevere the great reviews, tips, and more on the site. All articles are being reposted with the integrity on the original articles intact as much as possible (there are some minor edits, and dead links that have been removed). Even though these may be older articles they can provide useful information to both new and old fans alike. We thank John for providing us this opportunity.
Owner/Blogger of Kaiju Addicts, a premiere X-Plus and figure related website.
Kaiju Addicts is a guide to collecting X-Plus Godzilla/Kaiju vinyls. It is site that is a web portal featuring all things X-Plus including his own written figure reviews, news, release schedules as well as content from other collectors and reviewers.
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