The World Trade Center is a business plaza in central New York. It was destroyed in the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, but was rebuilt, starting with 7 World Trade Center in 2006, 4 World Trade Center in 2013, and 1 World Trade Center in 2014, with more buildings under or awaiting construction. The World Trade Center played a prominent role in the climax of the 1976 version of King Kong, and appears as a significant piece of scenery in various other kaiju films centered on New York.
In the final scene of the film, King Kong traveled towards the World Trade Center, as its two towers resemble a rock formation on Skull Island. He scaled the South Tower (WTC 2), but was repelled by soldiers on the roof carrying flamethrowers. He leapt between the South and North Tower, landing on the North Tower's roof. After ripping up and throwing pieces of the radio equipment at the soldiers, he threw a tank of flammable material at them, killing the men in a small explosion. A group of military Helicopters intercepted the Giant Ape, and King Kong fought them, destroying two of the helicopters. Unfortunately, the mounted machine guns of the remaining helicopters were too much for the primate to handle, and he grew weak from his injuries, falling off the tower and crushing the fountain at ground level. After hitting the ground, his heart stopped, and he died.
Although not physically appearing in the film, the World Trade Center is mentioned and seen in a flashback as it is explained that King Kong did not die after falling from the North Tower, but instead was seriously injured and fell into a decade-long coma.
Throughout the film, the World Trade Center appears in background shots. When Zilla first appeared in New York, many hundreds of UH-1H Iroquois, AH-64 Apaches and F-18 Hornets are seen flying straight into New York, using the Towers as a marker. Several of the jets fly between the towers as they enter the city. Charles Caiman later states that Zilla's attack on the city is the 'worst thing to happen to the city since the 1993 World Trade Center bombings.'
The World Trade Center appears as a backdrop in many episodes. The most significant role it played was in the episode Future Shock, in which the towers were destroyed in the D.R.A.G.M.A. infested future. Randy Hernandez remarks when he sees them that "It looks like somebody's been playing dominoes with the World Trade Center."
- Despite being relatively tall (50 feet), King Kong's daring leap between the towers in the 1976 remake is still impressive - this is a distance of around 250 meters.
- The World Trade Center took the place of the Empire State Building in the climax of the 1976 remake of King Kong because its two towers had surpassed the Empire State Building as the tallest buildings in New York at the time.
- The American poster for Godzilla vs. Megalon features Godzilla and Megalon standing atop the World Trade Center, despite the fact that not a single scene in the film takes place in the United States, and that both monsters are too large to be able to stand on the top of either tower. This was most likely done to capitalize on the release of the 1976 version of King Kong, which was released the same year that Godzilla vs. Megalon was released in the U.S.
- During the filming of the final scene in King Kong, over 30,000 people showed up at the plaza to play the role of extras in the film. So many people attended that the Port Authority became concerned that the weight of all the people could damage the plaza itself, and ordered the crew to shut down the filming. However, the completed scene featuring a large crowd rushing towards King Kong's body was finished nonetheless, and included in the final product.
- The World Trade Center would have been prominently featured in the final battle between Godzilla and the Gryphon in the unmade 1994 American Godzilla film. During the battle, both monsters would have fought each other at the foot of WTC 1 and 2.