Here are 9 famous actors from Japan died at 72:
Nachi Nozawa (January 13, 1938 Tokyo Prefecture-October 30, 2010 Tokyo) also known as Yasutomo Nozawa, Shuji J. Nozawa, Shuji J.Nozawa, Nara Nozawa, Nozawa Nachi or Nozawa Yasutomo was a Japanese theatre director, voice actor and actor. He had one child, Soh Nozawa.
He died in lung cancer.
Nachi Nozawa was a highly respected figure in the Japanese entertainment industry, having established himself as a prominent theatre director in the 1960s before transitioning to voice acting in the 1970s. He was known for his deep, commanding voice and playing a wide range of characters throughout his career, from villains to heroic figures. Some of his most notable voice acting roles include Piccolo in the Dragon Ball series and Captain Hook in the Japanese dub of Peter Pan. In addition to his voice work, he also made several appearances in film and television, including roles in the popular Japanese dramas "The Yagyu Conspiracy" and "Abarenbo Shogun". Despite his success and accomplishments, Nachi Nozawa remained very private about his personal life, rarely giving interviews or speaking publicly about his personal beliefs or experiences. He passed away on October 30, 2010, at the age of 72, leaving behind a legacy as one of Japan's most talented and versatile performers.
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Mako Iwamatsu (December 10, 1933 Kobe-July 21, 2006 Somis) otherwise known as Makoto Iwamatsu, Mako Wakamatsu, Iwamatsu Mako, 岩松 マコ or Mako was a Japanese actor and voice actor. He had two children, Sala Iwamatsu and Mimosa Iwamatsu.
He died in esophageal cancer.
Mako was born in Kobe, Japan and moved to the United States in the late 1940s. He attended the Pasadena Playhouse in California and became a naturalized American citizen in the 1950s. Mako is known for his roles in films such as "The Sand Pebbles", "Conan the Barbarian", and "Memoirs of a Geisha". He also provided the voice for Aku in the animated television series "Samurai Jack" and Uncle Iroh in "Avatar: The Last Airbender". Mako was a founding member of the Asian American Theater Company and was active in promoting Asian American representation in the entertainment industry.
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Kokuten Kodo (January 29, 1887 Takasago-January 22, 1960) also known as Saichirô Tanigawa, Kuninori Todo or Kokuten Kôdô was a Japanese actor.
He is best known for his work in jidaigeki, period dramas, where he often played villains or gruff samurai. Kodo began his acting career in the silent film era and later transitioned to talkies in the 1930s. He appeared in over 300 films throughout his career and worked with some of the most renowned directors of his time, including Akira Kurosawa. In addition to his film work, Kodo also acted in stage plays and was a skilled calligrapher. He received numerous awards for his contributions to Japanese cinema, including the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette in 1958.
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Jun Tazaki (August 28, 1913 Aomori-October 18, 1985 Tokyo) otherwise known as Minoru Tanaka or Tazaki Jun was a Japanese actor.
He starred in over 200 films throughout his career, starting in the 1940s. Tazaki was best known for his roles in martial arts, samurai, and science fiction films. He worked with some of Japan's most famous directors, such as Akira Kurosawa and Ishiro Honda. Tazaki also made appearances in television shows, such as Ultraman and Super Sentai. He was admired for his portrayal of strong and often stoic characters, and his deep voice and commanding presence made him a memorable and respected figure in Japanese cinema. Tazaki was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor with Purple Ribbon for his contributions to the arts in Japan.
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Kinji Fukasaku (July 3, 1930 Mito-January 12, 2003 Tokyo) also known as Fukasaku Kinji was a Japanese screenwriter, film director and actor. His child is Kenta Fukasaku.
He died as a result of prostate cancer.
Throughout his career, Kinji Fukasaku directed more than 60 films, several of which were critically acclaimed and became cult classics. He began working in the film industry in the 1950s and gained prominence in the 1970s with his yakuza films, such as "Battles Without Honor and Humanity" and its sequels.
In the 2000s, Fukasaku gained international recognition with his film "Battle Royale," a dystopian tale about a group of teenagers forced to fight to the death on a deserted island. The film sparked controversy and was banned in several countries, but it also inspired a generation of filmmakers and became a cult classic.
Apart from his work in the film industry, Fukasaku was also a political activist who advocated for peace and social justice. He was a survivor of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and often incorporated his experiences into his films.
Fukasaku's legacy continues to influence contemporary filmmakers, and his contribution to Japanese cinema remains significant.
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Tomu Uchida (April 26, 1898 Okayama-August 7, 1970 Japan) otherwise known as Tomu, Uchida Tomu or Tsunejirō Uchida was a Japanese film director, screenwriter and actor.
He died in cancer.
Uchida began his career in the film industry as an actor in silent films, before transitioning to directing and writing screenplays. He is best known for his work in the jidaigeki (period drama) genre, with films such as "Chiyari Fuji" and "A Bloody Spear at Mount Fuji" being considered classics of the genre. Uchida also experimented with other genres, creating the first full-color Japanese horror film, "The Mad Fox". Despite his contributions to Japanese cinema, Uchida's work was largely overlooked during his lifetime, with much of his films receiving recognition only in the years after his death. Today, he is recognized as one of the most important directors of Japanese cinema.
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Chosuke Ikariya (November 1, 1931 Sumida, Tokyo-March 20, 2004 Minato) also known as Choichi Ikariya, Chō-san, Chōichi Ikariya, Ikariya Chōsuke, Chôsuke Ikariya or The Drifters was a Japanese comedian and actor. He had one child, .
He died in lymphoma.
Chosuke Ikariya is best known for being a member of the Japanese comedy troupe, The Drifters. The group was formed in 1953 and gained popularity in the 1960s with their comedy music performances. Ikariya was known for his unique comedic style and his ability to make people laugh with his witty jokes and facial expressions.
In addition to his work with The Drifters, Ikariya also appeared in numerous Japanese films and television shows. Some of his notable roles include the film "Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro" and the television series "Sasurai no Taiyou".
Ikariya was also an accomplished musician, playing the bass guitar and contributing vocals to many of The Drifters' songs. He was known for his musical talent and often performed in concerts and live shows.
Despite his success, Ikariya battled with health issues throughout his life. He was diagnosed with lymphoma in 2000 and passed away on March 20, 2004 at the age of 72. His legacy as a talented comedian, actor, and musician continues to live on in Japan.
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Kajirō Yamamoto (March 15, 1902 Kyōbashi-September 21, 1974 Japan) also known as Kajiro Yamamoto or Kajirô Yamamoto was a Japanese film director, screenwriter, actor and film producer.
Yamamoto began his career in the film industry as an actor, appearing in films such as Yasujirō Ozu's "Tokyo Chorus" (1931). However, it was his work behind the camera that earned him the most recognition. He directed over 50 films during his career, including the critically acclaimed "The Grand Hotel" (1936) and "Humanity and Paper Balloons" (1937).
Yamamoto was also known for his collaboration with the legendary filmmaker Akira Kurosawa. He produced Kurosawa's debut film "Sanshiro Sugata" (1943) and went on to produce several of his later works, including "Ikiru" (1952) and "Seven Samurai" (1954).
In addition to his work in the film industry, Yamamoto was also a member of the Japanese parliament from 1953 to 1958. He passed away in 1974 at the age of 72.
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Shinji Nakae (April 20, 1935 Koto, Tokyo-June 28, 2007 Koganei) otherwise known as Yoshitaka Satō was a Japanese voice actor, actor and narrator.
He died in hepatocellular carcinoma.
During his career, Shinji Nakae was one of the most prominent voice actors in Japan, having lent his voice to a number of well-known animated characters. He was also a seasoned actor and narrator, having appeared in numerous live-action productions and documentaries. Some of his notable voice acting credits include Captain Hook in Peter Pan, Inspector Zenigata in Lupin III, and Shenron in Dragon Ball Z. In addition, he lent his voice to video games such as Super Robot Wars and Metroid. Despite his passing, Nakae's voice continues to be heard by fans of his work across the globe.
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