Godzilla actor Haruo Nakajima has died aged 88

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The man behind the monster has passed away: #Haruo Nakajima, who wore the special bodysuit for each "Godzilla" movie, died at 88.

Haruo Nakajima and friend in 2016; Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images (TOKYO) - The OG Godzilla has died.

Born in 1929 in Yamagata, Japan, Nakajima made his live-action debut in Hiroshi Inagaki's 1952 samurai flick Sword for Hire. Because rubber was in short supply after the war, materials like concrete were used to make the original suit, pushing its weight to 100 kilograms.

Japanese movie major Toho confirmed Nakajima's death.

The film inspired several adaptations, including an American version in the same year co-directed by Terry O Morse and Ishiro Honda - the original director - titled Godzilla: King Of The Monsters.

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Nakajima was a stunt actor in samurai films before taking the role of Godzilla, which arguably is Japan's most successful cultural export with regards to cinema. It was so heavy and hot, and with the lighting, it was even hot just to touch it.

Nakajima started his career playing small bit roles, but his big break was bringing Godzilla to life in its seminal debut.

Godzilla, a walking, radiation-breathing analogy for nuclear disaster resonated in Japan. In 2014, he gave an interview where he said: "I am the original, the real thing. He showed our audiences that atomic bombs are frightening".

Despite the numerous remakes, Nakajima still believed his portrayal of Godzilla was the best.

Nakajima studied the walking patterns of bears and elephants to develop the signature gait of Godzilla, and went on to appear in other monster movies.

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