This legendary gorilla has been capturing the public’s imagination since the original black and white film, King Kong, starring Fay Wray, was released in 1933. Since then, his capture from Skull Island and subsequent tragic romance with his human lady friend have been immortalized in remakes such as 2005’s King Kong, directed by Lord of The Ring’s filmmaker, Peter Jackson. There have been seven films made about King Kong over the years, and King Kong Vs. Godzilla (1962), the third in a series of Japanese films about Godzilla, remains a cult classic today.
The King Kong character was conceived and created by U.S. filmmaker Merian C. Cooper. In the original film, the character's name is Kong, a name given to him by the inhabitants of "Skull Island" in the Pacific Ocean, where Kong lives along with other over-sized animals such as a plesiosaur, pterosaurs, and dinosaurs. An American film crew, led by Carl Denham, captures Kong and takes him to New York City to be exhibited as the "Eighth Wonder of the World".
Kong escapes and climbs the Empire State Building (the original World Trade Center in the 1976 remake) as Denham comments, "It was beauty that killed the beast," for he climbs the building in the first place only in an attempt to protect Ann Darrow, an actress originally offered up to Kong as a sacrifice (in the 1976 remake, the character is named Dwan).