entertainment

Actor Ken Takakura dies at 83

41 Comments

Actor Ken Takakura has died at the age of 83, Japanese media reported Tuesday.

Takakura died of lymphoma at a hospital in Tokyo on Nov 10, NTV reported.

Takakura, who made 205 screen appearances, was best known to Western audiences for four films -- the 1970 World War II film "Too Late the Hero," "The Yakuza" with Robert Mitchum in 1975, "Black Rain" with Michael Douglas in 1989 and "Mr Baseball" with Tom Selleck in 1992.

His last film was "Dearest" in 2012, in which he starred with Beat Takeshi.

Takakura was given the Order of Culture by Emperor Akihito in 2013 for his contribution to Japan's arts.

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41 Comments
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RIP. Only know him from Black Rain.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I Was a fan of him during1970s. Furu no Hana, bullet train and Yakuza are good movies. Although he was skinny, his facial expression and gesture are very Macho. He has fearlessness and cold blooded character. No new generation J actor has maleness like him. RIP.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I remember him in Mr. Baseball and Black Rain. Both characters were stoic and honorable. RIP.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I remember him in the American movies as well as a few Japanese flicks. Seemed like a pretty decent actor. RIP.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Black Rain was fun. Mr Baseball was a bit of a cliche flick but still had its moments.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

One of my favourites. Will miss him.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I will miss him. Great actor but not that well known outside Japan.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Highly recommend Nankyoku Monogatari (Antarctica).

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Kanashii!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@it'sme: He was very popular in China during the 70s.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Akkk1.

The, was not aware of that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Because of his oft-repeated role as the no-nonsense lone wolf steeped in the traditional Japanese ethic of "giri" he was commonly described as the man who never smiles.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The Movie 'Black Rain' was what made me decide to come to Japan. And I remember watching Mr. Baseball the week before I was to move here! RIP Ken!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He was very relaxed around foreigners and easy to approach. I had the good fortune to have met and chatted with him in person. When I told him we had a mutual friend in Kyoto he became quite friendly and cracked a joke about the friend. I enjoyed his movies too. He, Mifune and Yujiro Ishihara were the charismatic characters who dominated the domestic movie industry.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

He's extremely well-known and popular in Japan, so I wonder why it took over a week for his death to be reported.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Back in 1970s, many Burmese from Burma compared him with like Clint Eastwood character of The Man with no name. He can be called as The Man with No Smile. Only a few of his movies released in Burma or Myanmar. His acting is similar with Toshio Mifune or Tesuo Tambawho were very manly.

Furu No Hana was remade with Burmese version. He murdered the girl father in front of the girl. When the girl ran and cried over her father dead body, he comforted the girl. He felt guilty about his crime and protected the girl when he was released from the prison. The girl has blossomed as beautiful woman. He threat her like his own daughter. It was one of his master piece. He can be cruel as gangster. He can be gentle and protective as father. He did not talk with the girl with single word. Only he expressed with cool manner. What's a great actor! RIP.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

zootmoney at Nov. 18, 2014 - 05:05PM JST "He's extremely well-known and popular in Japan, so I wonder why it took over a week for his death to be reported."

I suspect because that is the way he wanted it to be, after private funeral etc were finished. He was well known for keeping his private life very private.

I would have liked to see him do some more old guy roles as he got older. it's a pity that has been cut short, but such is life. RIP to another great Showa period star.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

R.I.P. Takakura Ken!! You were one of my favorite Japanese actors!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

A great actor. Lymphoma? Didn't happen to be a smoker, did he?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@CrazyJoe

Because of his oft-repeated role as the no-nonsense lone wolf steeped in the traditional Japanese ethic of "giri" he was commonly described as the man who never smiles.

I have always adored him ! My son met him a couple of times and told me the "cold, non-smiling character" he portrays is in fact a fun loving and warm character who, it turns out, loves to joke. I will really miss him. Rest in peace Mr. Takakura.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

So sad news...RIP

1 ( +1 / -0 )

47 Ronin was a great film he was in too.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

One of only a few Japanese actors that I know when I hear his name. RIP Mr. Takakura. You were well liked.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The fact is that he owned millions of fans in China, especially among over 40 old people. I believe many of them break in tears today even though most of them don't like Japan. How Abe made things like this!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Rest in peace, Takakura-san ! Kako yokatta ze !

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I've never thought that I want to be an adult...

I've always thought I want to be a man.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqxEW-Ok7dU

So cool.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Very sad news, indeed. He was one of the coolest actors ever to come out of Japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

R.I.P Major Yamaguchi as I knew him in Too late the Hero, a brilliant act in that movie and the others I have seen him in.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Takakura was great as Ken Tanaka in The Yakuza and as Masa Matsumoto in Black Rain.

Nick ( Michael Douglas ): Just hope they got a nip in this building who speaks f'king English.

Masa: Assistant Inpector Matsumoto masahiro, criminal investigation section, Osak Prefecture police. And I do speak f'king English.

Hee hee, good one, Takakura san! RIP.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He was definitely a great actor. I definitely remember him in Black Rain and Mr. Baseball. He had very good English speaking skills.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I loved his work in Mr Baseball and Black Rain. Sorry to read of his passing. RIP

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

He was outstanding in the film Yakuza -- his performance was one of the high points of that film.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

A legend. RIP.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Bummed! Great actor! RIP

1 ( +2 / -1 )

One of my favorite actors from Japan, thanks for your art Ken. x

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He will be missed greatly I know I shall for I have watched all of his movies and I place him in the top 2% of all acting people.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

One of the greats. RIP.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Very sad. He was one of the very few true movie stars in Japan, and one of the most modest. His work will live on forever. RIP Ken-san.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Awesome actor! Loved watching his prison movies form the 60s. Shall be missed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Loved him in Black Rain. Japan has lost a national treasure.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was very very sad. He was very very good movie actor and very famous actor.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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