Fictional city-wrecking monster Godzilla has been granted special residency in Tokyo’s Shinjuku ward, as a newly installed model of the lizard’s huge head proves a pull to visitors.

Marking “the emergence of the 12m high Godzilla head on a terrace on the eighth floor of Shinjuku Toho Building… we issued a special certificate of residence to Godzilla,” said a Shinjuku official.

The 30-floor commercial complex has a hotel, cinemas, shops and restaurants, and the newly installed beast’s head is visible to passers-by on the street below.

Aficionados can book a night in hotel rooms with a view of the monster as it looms outside their window.

“Shinjuku ward also appointed Godzilla as a special envoy for tourism,” the official said.

Anyone who goes to a ward office can get a copy of the residence certificate, which is normally used in applications for passports or to register a child at a local nursery school.

The 1954 movie Gojira – a Japanese portmanteau of “gorilla” and kujira (whale) – was a mega hit, drawing 9.6 million viewers in the days before television sets were commonplace in Japanese households.

It has since been through numerous incarnations, including several done in Hollywood.

Film studio Toho, which owns the rights to Godzilla, is planning a new movie for release next year. That follows a US$160mil (RM602.16mil) box-office success last year for Warner Bros (see gif above). – AFP Relaxnews