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The Dragon in Princess from the Moon
Alternate names Sea Dragon,[1][2] Giant Sea Dragon,[1] Indian Dragon,[3] Elasmosaurus[4]
Subtitle(s) Legendary Dragon
(伝説竜,   Densetsu Ryū)[2]
Species Elasmosaurus[5]
Height 15 meters[1][2]
Length 100 meters[3]
Weight 3,000 metric tons[1][2]
Place(s) of emergence Indian Ocean[5]
Modeled by Nobuyuki Yasumaru, Tomoki Kobayashi
First appearance Princess from the Moon

The Dragon (竜,   Ryū) is a kaiju that briefly appeared in the 1987 Toho fantasy film Princess from the Moon.


Although usually only referred to as Dragon (竜,   Ryū), the creature has been given several other names from various publications, such as Sea Dragon (海竜,   Kairyū)[1][2] and Indian Dragon (天竺の竜,   Tenjiku no Ryū).[3] While All Toho Monsters Pictorial Book labels it "Sea Dragon" in Japanese, it offers the English translation Giant Sea Dragon. The book Godzilla Fierce Fighting Super Encyclopedia instead labels it Elasmosaurus (エラスモサウルス,   Erasumosaurusu),[4] elaborating that "the identity of the dragon was the plesiosaur Elasmosaurus."[5][note 1]


The Dragon bears resemblance to multiple mythological depictions of sea serpents, having a long, limbless body with only its head streching out of the water. Its mouth features two rows of fangs while promotional images reveal its eyes to be yellow and its head to have three small vertically aligned horns. Its tail ends in a fish-like caudal fin.


The Dragon was portrayed using a mechanized puppet of its neck and head which was modeled by Nobuyuki Yasumaru and Tomoki Kobayashi.[1] A popular rumor states that the Dragon prop was originally constructed as the Loch Ness Monster for the unmade Toho and Hammer collaboration film Nessie, and simply reused for Princess from the Moon. While this is untrue and only a small maquette was ever created for Nessie, Yasumaru stated that he did in fact base the Dragon's face on that of his Nessie prototype, as neither director Kon Ichikawa nor special effects director Teruyoshi Nakano gave any direction as to how the creature should look.[1] The puppet moved along a rail on the floor of Toho's Big Pool, and was fitted with a mechanism to raise its head up and down as it moved forward.[1]

The Dragon prop was reused by Koichi Kawakita for a promotional video screened at the Sea and Island Expo in Hiroshima in 1989.[1]


Princess from the Moon

While a crew of sailors was sailing aboard their boat in the ocean, they witnessed the Dragon surface near their boat. Their first reaction was to shoot the Dragon with harpoons, landing only a few hits. The Dragon then swam at full speed toward the ship, destroying it and killing all aboard.


Main article: Dragon/Gallery.


The Dragon's full appearance in
Princess from the Moon


  1. 竜の正体は首長竜エラスモサウルスだった。 (p. 69)


This is a list of references for Dragon. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]


  • Ozawa, Ryoko; Tomoi, Taketo; Nakamura, Tetsu, eds. (4 September 2016). All Toho Monsters Pictorial Book (4th ed.). Yosensha. p. 159. ISBN 978-4-8003-0362-2.
  • Yae, Jinbo; Sasaki, Hiroyuki; Inoue, Yuji; Suzuki, Masumi; Fukasawa, Kotaro; Ishii, Takaaki (21 December 1994). Definitive Edition of Toho Monster Movies!! Godzilla Special Effects Complete Works. Natsumesha. ISBN 4-8163-1775-9.
  • Motoyama, Sho; Matsunomoto, Kazuhiro; Asai, Kazuyasu; Suzuki, Nobutaka; Kato, Masashi (28 September 2012). Toho Special Effects Movie Complete Works. villagebooks. ISBN 978-4864910132.
  • Eguchi, Mizuki (30 December 1992). Godzilla Fierce Fighting Super Encyclopedia. Asahi Sonorama. ASIN B0083R72QM.


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