Here are 7 famous actresses from Japan were born in 1931:
Kaoru Yachigusa (January 6, 1931 Osaka Prefecture-) also known as Yachigusa Kaoru is a Japanese actor.
She began her career as a child actress in the 1940s and has appeared in over 80 films and numerous television dramas throughout her career. Yachigusa is perhaps best known for her role in the 1955 film adaptation of Yasunari Kawabata's novel "The Sound of the Mountain," which won her the Best Actress award at the Blue Ribbon Awards. In addition to her acting work, Yachigusa has also worked as a theater director and producer. She has received numerous awards throughout her career, including the Medal with Purple Ribbon and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star.
Yachigusa was born in Osaka Prefecture and became interested in acting at a young age. She made her film debut in 1949 with "The Dancing Girl of Izu" and continued to act in films throughout the 1950s and 1960s. In addition to her work in film, Yachigusa has also appeared in numerous television dramas, including the popular series "Oshin" and "Mito Komon."
Yachigusa has also made significant contributions to Japanese theater. In the 1970s, she began working as a theater director and producer, and has since directed numerous plays and musicals. In recognition of her work in theater, Yachigusa was awarded the Medal with Purple Ribbon in 1990.
Throughout her career, Yachigusa has been highly regarded for her versatility as an actress, her skill in portraying complex characters, and her dedication to her craft. She continues to work in film and theater, and remains a respected figure in the Japanese entertainment industry.
Yoshiko Kuga (January 21, 1931 Ushigome, Tokyo-) a.k.a. Haruko Koga, Kuga Yoshiko, Kuga Haruko, Onoda Haruko or Haruko Onoda is a Japanese actor.
She began her acting career in 1952 and became a household name in Japan for her roles in several films and TV dramas. Some of her most notable works include "Twenty-Four Eyes" (1954), "Yoru no Tobari" (1955), and "The Human Condition" trilogy (1959-1961). Kuga was known for her versatile acting skills and ability to portray various roles with ease. She also received numerous awards throughout her career, including the Kinuyo Tanaka Award for her contributions to female actors in Japan. After retiring from acting in 1992, Kuga continued to be involved in the film industry as a presenter and commentator.
In addition to her successful acting career, Yoshiko Kuga was also a prominent voice in the women's rights movement in Japan. She was a member of the Women's Theatrical Group and regularly participated in feminist protests and demonstrations. Kuga was passionate about promoting gender equality and encouraging women's participation in the arts. She was also a vocal advocate for peace and nuclear disarmament. In 1985, she co-founded the Hiroshima-Net, which is an organization dedicated to promoting peace and supporting victims of the Hiroshima atomic bombing. Yoshiko Kuga was a beloved figure in Japanese cinema and culture, and she continues to be remembered for her contributions to both the film industry and social activism.
Kyōko Kagawa (December 5, 1931 Asou-) otherwise known as Kyoko Ikebe, Kagawa Kyōko, Kyoko Makino, Makino Kyoko, 牧野 香子, 香川 京子 or K. Kagawa is a Japanese actor.
She is considered one of Japan's greatest actresses, having appeared in over 115 films and television dramas throughout her career. Kagawa began her acting career in the late 1940s and quickly rose to fame in the 1950s, working with such renowned directors as Akira Kurosawa, Yasujiro Ozu, and Mikio Naruse.
Some of Kagawa's most notable film roles include "Tokyo Story" (1953), "Sansho the Bailiff" (1954), "High and Low" (1963), and "The Face of Another" (1966). She has won numerous awards for her performances, including the Best Actress award at the Blue Ribbon Awards for her role in "The Insect Woman" (1963).
In addition to her work in cinema, Kagawa has also appeared in several stage productions and television dramas. Throughout her career, she has remained a beloved and highly respected figure in the Japanese entertainment industry.
Kagawa began her acting training in high school, where she studied under renowned Japanese director, Akira Kurosawa. In 1949, she made her debut in Kurosawa's film, "Bakushu" (The Idiot). Kagawa gained widespread attention for her role in Yasujiro Ozu's "Tokyo Story" in 1953, which is now considered a masterpiece of Japanese cinema. She went on to work with both Kurosawa and Ozu on several other films, including "The Human Condition" trilogy and "Late Spring" respectively.
Kagawa was also a frequent collaborator with director Mikio Naruse, appearing in several of his films throughout the 1950s and '60s. She continued to work in Japanese films throughout the '70s and '80s, but gradually shifted her focus to television dramas in the '90s.
In addition to her acting career, Kagawa has also been involved in humanitarian work. She served as the ambassador for the Japanese Red Cross Society for over 20 years and was appointed as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund in 1999. In recognition of her contributions to culture, Kagawa was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette by the Japanese government in 2018.
Fujiko Yamamoto (December 11, 1931 Nishi-ku, Osaka-) also known as 山本 富士子 Yamamoto Fujiko or Contact Mr. Fuji is a Japanese actor. She has one child, Shigeharu Yamamoto.
Fujiko Yamamoto is known for her extensive career in the Japanese film industry. She started her acting career in 1951 when she was discovered by a film director while working as a typist. Her breakthrough role was in the film "Season of the Sun" (1956), where she starred alongside Yujiro Ishihara, one of Japan's most popular actors at the time. She went on to star in numerous films throughout the 1950s and 1960s, becoming a household name in Japan.
Yamamoto's talent was not limited to acting. In the 1970s, she became one of the first female TV commercial directors in Japan, directing commercials for major companies such as Shiseido and Suntory. She also worked as a scriptwriter and producer.
In addition to her successful career in the entertainment industry, Yamamoto is also recognized for her philanthropic work. She has been involved in a number of charitable organizations throughout her life, including the City of Hope Japan, which provides specialized medical care for cancer patients.
Now in her 90s, Fujiko Yamamoto continues to be an icon in the Japanese film industry, with a career spanning more than six decades.
Despite facing some challenges in a male-dominated industry, Fujiko Yamamoto remained one of the most sought-after actresses in Japan. She demonstrated her versatility in various film genres, including drama, comedy, and action films. In 1963, she received the Blue Ribbon Award for Best Actress for her role in the film "Black Test Car."Throughout her career, Fujiko Yamamoto worked with some of the most prominent filmmakers in Japan, including Yasujirō Ozu, Keisuke Kinoshita, and Nagisa Ōshima. She also appeared in several international films, such as the French film "Le Soleil des voyous" (1967) and the American film "The Yakuza" (1974).Aside from her work in the entertainment industry, Yamamoto has been an advocate for women's rights in Japan. In the 1990s, she became involved in the Women's Film Festival in Tokyo, promoting the work of female filmmakers. She also served as a jury member for the Tokyo International Film Festival and the Japan Academy Prize.Yamamoto's contribution to Japanese cinema has been acknowledged with numerous awards, including the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, which she received in 2009. Despite her many achievements, Fujiko Yamamoto remains humble, stating in an interview, "I think that acting is not just a profession but an opportunity to learn more about human nature."
Chieko Ichikawa (October 2, 1931 Osaka-) is a Japanese actor.
Chieko Ichikawa started her acting career in the late 1940s and became prominent in the 1950s with her roles in popular Japanese films such as "Tokyo Twilight" and "Equinox Flower". She was known for her versatile acting range and her ability to portray complex characters with depth and authenticity. Throughout her career, Ichikawa worked with some of the most celebrated directors in Japanese cinema, including Yasujiro Ozu and Kon Ichikawa.
In addition to her film work, Ichikawa also appeared on stage and television. In 1986, she received the Best Supporting Actress award at the Japan Academy Prize for her performance in the film "The Crazy Family". Although retired from acting since the late 1990s, Chieko Ichikawa remains an influential figure in Japanese cinema and a respected veteran of the industry.
In addition to her acting career, Chieko Ichikawa was also a prominent activist and advocate for women's rights in Japan. She was a member of the Japan Women's Association, an organization that works to promote gender equality and eliminate discrimination against women. Ichikawa spoke out against various forms of oppression, including the use of "comfort women" (women who were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II). She also worked to raise awareness about issues affecting marginalized groups, such as the Ainu people of northern Japan. Even after her retirement from acting, Ichikawa continued to be involved in social and political causes and was a vocal supporter of progressive movements in Japan.
Shinobu Chihara (January 16, 1931 Okayama Prefecture-November 22, 2009) also known as Tomoko Ishihara or Chihara Shinobu was a Japanese actor.
She began her acting career in 1955 and appeared in numerous films and television dramas throughout the following decades. Chihara was known for her elegant and graceful presence on screen, often playing sophisticated and refined characters. She received critical acclaim for her role in the 1955 film "A Slope in the Sun" and later won the Best Supporting Actress award at the 12th Blue Ribbon Awards for her performance in the 1967 film "24 Eyes". Chihara's final role was in the 2009 film "One Million Yen Girl". In addition to her acting career, she was also a talented singer and released several albums throughout her life.
Although Chihara was mainly active in Japanese entertainment industry, she gained international recognition for her role in the 1964 film "Kawaita hana" ("Pale Flower"). The film was selected as the Japanese entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 37th Academy Awards. Chihara was married to the famous Japanese actor Osamu Takizawa and they appeared in several films together. She was also known for her philanthropic work and supported organizations dedicated to children's welfare, cancer research and animal rights. After her death in 2009, she was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor with Purple Ribbon by the Japanese government for her contributions to arts and culture.
Toshiko Yabuki (January 7, 1931 Kanagawa Prefecture-October 12, 1990) was a Japanese voice actor and actor.
She began her career in the entertainment industry during the 1950s and became a well-known voice actor, lending her voice to numerous anime series, TV dramas, and films. Some of her notable roles include Sophia in the Japanese dub of "The Golden Girls," Mrs. Brisby in the Japanese dub of "The Secret of NIMH," and Jane in the Japanese dub of "Tarzan." Along with her voice acting career, Yabuki also appeared in several Japanese films and TV dramas, including "The Human Condition" and "Dokuganryu Masamune." Despite a successful career, Yabuki retired from acting in the early 1980s and lived a quiet life until her death in 1990.
Yabuki started her career as a member of the Haiyuza Theatre Company, one of Japan's leading prestigious theatre troupes, in the 1950s. She also worked as a newscaster for NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) in the early days of television in Japan. Yabuki was one of the pioneers of voice acting in Japan and paved the way for future female voice actors with her strong and emotive performances. She was also known for her distinctive voice, often playing motherly or wise characters. In addition to her acting career, Yabuki was a philanthropist, supporting various charities and organizations. After her retirement, she devoted her time to her family and her hobbies, including painting and designing clothes. She passed away in 1990 from liver cancer, leaving behind a legacy as one of Japan's most beloved voice actors.