Shintaro Katsu

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Shintaro Katsu
Shintarō Katsu in Hatsu-haru Tanuki Goten 1959.jpg
The Badger Palace: Happy New Year (初春狸御殿 Hatsu Haru, Tanuki-goten, 1959)
Born Toshio Okumura
(1931-11-29)November 29, 1931
Fukagawa, Tokyo, Japan
Died June 21, 1997(1997-06-21) (aged 65)
Kashiwa, Chiba, Japan
Occupation Actor, singer, producer, writer and director
Years active 1954–1997
Spouse(s) Tamao Nakamura

Shintaro Katsu (勝 新太郎 Katsu Shintarō?), 29 November 1931 – 21 June 1997, was a Japanese actor, singer, producer, and director.

Life and career[edit]

Born Toshio Okumura (奥村 利夫 Okumura Toshio) on 29 November 1931. He was the son of kabuki performer Katsutoji Kineya (Kineya Katsutōji) who was renowned for his nagauta and shamisen skills, and younger brother of actor Tomisaburo Wakayama (Wakayama Tomisaburō).

Shintaro Katsu began his career in entertainment as a shamisen player. He switched to acting because he noticed it was better paid. In the 1960s he starred simultaneously in three long-running series of films, the Akumyo series, the Hoodlum Soldier series, and the Zatoichi series.

He played the role of blind masseur Zatoichi in a series of films in 25 movies between 1962 and 1973, starred and directed a 26th in 1989 and played the role in four seasons of a spin-off television series.[1]

After the closing of Daiei Studios, Katsu formed the company Katsu Productions.[2]

Katsu had a troubled personal life. A heavy drinker, Katsu had several skirmishes with the law regarding drug use as well, including marijuana, opium, and cocaine with arrests in 1978, 1990, and 1992.[1]

He had also developed a reputation for being something of a troublemaker on set. When director Akira Kurosawa cast him for the lead role in Kagemusha (1980), Katsu left before the first day of shooting was over.[3] Though accounts differ as to the incident, the most consistent one details Katsu's clash with Kurosawa regarding bringing his own film crew to the set (to film Kurosawa in action for later exhibition to his own acting students).[4][5] Kurosawa is reputed to have taken great offense at this, resulting in Katsu's termination (he was replaced by Tatsuya Nakadai). In her recent book, Waiting on the Weather, about her experiences with director Kurosawa, script supervisor Teruyo Nogami chalks the differences between Katsu and Kurosawa up to a personality clash that had unfortunate artistic results.[6]

He was the husband of actress Tamao Nakamura (married in 1962), and father of actor Ryutaro Gan (Gan Ryūtarō).[7]

Stunt actor Yukio Kato was killed on the set of Zatoichi 26 by Katsu's son, who was co-starring, when an actual sword was mistaken for a prop, fatally wounding Kato.

In her book, Geisha, A Life, famed Kyoto geisha Mineko Iwasaki claims a long time affair with Katsu, whom she calls by his given name, Toshio. The affair ended in 1976, and eventually the two became good friends until his death.[citation needed]

Katsu produced the manga-based Lone Wolf and Cub (Kozure Okami) series of jidaigeki films starring his brother Tomisaburo Wakayama which were later compiled into the movie Shogun Assassin, as well as co-writing, producing, and acting alongside his brother in the TV series Oshi samurai (Mute Samurai).

His other television work includes the police drama Keishi-K (Superintendent K) which he starred in (as Katsutoshi Gatsu), co-wrote, directed, and produced. His daughter, Masami Okumura, co-starred.

His film work includes the Hanzo the Razor series, as Detective Itami Hanzo. He was also an accomplished shamisen player, as well as a vocalist, recording several albums in both pop and Enka.

He died of pharyngeal cancer on 21 June 1997.

Filmography[edit]

As actor[edit]

Year Title Japanese Romanization Character
1955 A Girl Isn't Allowed to Love 薔薇いくたびか Bara ikutabika Akira Takakura
1956 Migratory Birds of the Flowers
1956 The Renyasai Yagyu Hidden Story
1956 Sisters of the Gion 祇園の姉妹 Gion no shimai
1956 Marason zamurai
1956 Ghost-Cat of Gojusan-Tsugi Kaibyo Gojusan-tsugi
1956 Tsukigata Hanpeita
1957 An Osaka Story Osaka monogatari
1957 Nijūkyū-nin no Kenka-jō
1957 Ghost-Cat of Yonaki Kaibyo Yonaki numa
1958 Nichiren and the Great Mongol Invasion 日蓮と蒙古大襲来 Nichiren to mōko daishūrai
1958 The Gay Masquerade Benten kozō
1958 The Loyal 47 Ronin 忠臣蔵 Chūshingura
1958 Ghost-Cat Wall of Hatred Kaibyō noroi no kabe
1959 Samurai Vendetta Hakuōki
1959 Seki no yatappe
1959 Beni azami
1959 Beauty Is Guilty Bibō ni tsumi ari
1959 Enchanted Princess Hatsuharu tanuki gotten
1960 Zoku Jirocho Fuji
1960 The Ogre of Mount Oe Ooe-yama Shuten-dōji
1960 Secrets of a Court Masseur
also titled The Blind Menace
and Agent Shiranui
Shiranui kengyō
1960 Tsukinode no ketto
1961 Mito komon umi o wataru
1961 Kaze to kumo totoride
1961 Hanakurabe tanuki dochu
1961 Blind Devotion Midaregami
1961 Tough Guy Akumyō Asakichi
1961 Buddha Shaka Devadatta
1961 Tough Guy, Part 2 Zoku akumyo Asakichi
1962 The Tale of Zatoichi Zatōichi monogatari Ichi
1962 New Bad Reputation Shin akumyo Asakichi
1962 The Whale God Kujira gami
1962 The Tale of Zatoichi Continues Zoku Zatoichi monogatari Ichi
1962 The Great Wall Shin shikōtei
1962 New Bad Reputation Continues Zoku shin akumyo Asakichi
1963 The Money Dance Dokonjo monogatari - zeni no odori
1963 Daisan no akumyo Asakichi
1963 An Actor's Revenge Yukinojo henge
1963 New Tale of Zatoichi Shin Zatoichi monogatari Ichi
1963 Akumyo ichiba Asakichi
1963 Zatoichi The Fugitive Zatoichi kyojo tabi Ichi
1963 Akumyo hatoba Asakichi
1963 Zatoichi on the Road Zatōichi kenka-tabi Ichi
1963 Akumyo ichiban Asakichi
1964 Zatoichi and the Chest of Gold Zatōichi senryō-kubi Ichi
1964 Suruga yūkyōden: Toba arashi
1964 Zatoichi's Flashing Sword Zatōichi abare tako Ichi
1964 Akumyo daiko Asakichi
1964 Suruga yūkyōden
1964 Fight, Zatoichi, Fight Zatōichi kesshō-tabi Ichi
1964 Kojiki taisho
1964 If You're Happy, Clap Your Hands Shiawasa nara te o tatake
1964 Adventures of Zatoichi Zatoichi sekisho yaburi Ichi
1964 Rōnin-gai
1964 Dokonjō monogatari: Zuputo iyatsu
1965 Suruga yūkyōden: Dokyō garasu
1965 The Hoodlum Soldier Heitai yakuza Kisaburo Omiya
1965 Zatoichi's Revenge Zatōichi nidan-kiri Ichi
1965 Akumyo nobori Asakichi
1965 Life of Matsu the Untamed Muhomatsu no issho
1965 Zatoichi and the Doomed Man Zatoichi sakate giri Ichi
1965 Akumyo muteki Asakichi
1965 Zatoichi and the Chess Expert Zatoichi Jigoku tabi Ichi
1965 Hoodlum Soldier and the C.O. Zoku heitai yakuza Ichi
1966 Akumyo zakura Asakichi
1966 Zatoichi's Vengeance Zatoichi no uta ga kikoeru Ichi
1966 Zatoichi's Pilgrimage Zatōichi umi o wataru Ichi
1966 Hoodlum Soldier Deserts Again Shin heitai yakuza
1966 Heitai yakuza datsugoku
1966 Heitai yakuza daidasso
1967 The Hoodlum Priest Yakuza bozu
1967 Heitai yakuza ore ni makasero
1967 Zatoichi's Cane Sword Zatoichi tekka tabi Ichi
1967 Akumyo ichidai Asakichi
1967 Zatoichi the Outlaw Zatōichi rōyaburi Ichi
1967 Hoodlum Soldier on the Attack Heitai yakuza nagurikomi
1967 Zatoichi Challenged Zatoichi chikemuri kaido Ichi
1968 Zoku yakuza bozu
1968 Tomuraishi tachi
1968 Heitai yakuza godatsu
1968 Akumyo juhachi-ban Asakichi
1968 The Man Without a Map Moetsukita chizu
1968 Zatoichi and the Fugitives Zatōichi hatashi-jō Ichi
1968 Samaritan Zatoichi Zatōichi kenka-daiko Ichi
1969 Devil's Temple Oni no sumu yakata
1969 Tenchu! Hitokiri Okada Izō
1969 The Magoichi Saga Shirikurae Magoichi Oda Nobunaga
1969 Akumyo ichiban shobu Asakichi
1970 Kenka ichidai: Dodekai yatsu
1970 Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo Zatōichi to Yōjinbō Ichi
1970 Genkai yūkyōden: Yabure kabure
1970 Incident at Blood Pass Machibuse
1970 Yakuza zessyō
1970 Zatoichi at the Fire Festival Zatōichi abare-himatsuri Ichi
1971 Zatoichi Meets the One Armed Swordsman Shin Zatōichi: Yabure! Tojin-ken Ichi
1971 Inn of Evil Inochi bō ni furō
1971 Kitsune no kureta akanbō
1971 Kaoyaku
1972 Zatoichi at Large Zatōichi goyō-tabi Ichi
1972 Shin heitai yakuza: Kasen
1972 Zatoichi in Desperation Shin Zatōichi monogatari: Oreta tsue aka Ichi
1972 Hanzo the Razor: Sword of Justice Goyōkiba
1973 Mute Samurai Oshi samurai (TV series) Manji
1973 Zatoichi's Conspiracy Shin Zatōichi monogatari: Kasama no chimatsuri Ichi
1973 Ōshō Sankichi Sakata
1973 Hanzo the Razor: The Snare Goyōkiba: Kamisori Hanzō jigoku zeme
1974 The Homeless Yadonashi
1974 Hanzo the Razor: Who's Got the Gold? Goyōkiba: Oni no Hanzō yawahada koban
1974 Akumyo: Notorious Dragon Akumyo: shima arashiaka Asakichi
1974 Zatōichi monogatari (TV series) Ichi
1983 Meiso chizu
1987 Dokugan-ryu Masamune (TV series) Toyotomi Hideyoshi
1988 Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis Teito monogatari Shibusawa Eiichi
1989 Zatoichi: Darkness Is His Ally Zatōichi 26 Ichi
1990 Saga of the Phoenix Kujaku ō: Ashura densetsu
1990 Rōnin-gai

As producer[edit]

Year Title Japanese Romanization Role
1970 Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo Zatôichi to Yôjinbô producer
1970 Zatoichi at the Fire Festival Zatôichi abare-himatsuri producer
1971 Zatoichi Meets the One Armed Swordsman Shin Zatôichi: Yabure! Tojin-ken producer
1971 Kaoyaku executive producer
1972 Hanzo the Razor: Sword of Justice Goyôkiba producer
1972 Zatoichi at Large Zatôichi goyô-tabi producer
1972 Shin heitai yakuza: Kasen producer
1972 Lone Wolf and Cub: Sword of Vengeance Kozure Ôkami: Kowokashi udekashi tsukamatsuru producer
1972 Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx Kozure Ôkami: Sanzu no kawa no ubaguruma producer
1972 Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart to Hades Kozure Ôkami: Shinikazeni mukau ubaguruma producer
1972 Zatoichi in Desperation Shin Zatôichi monogatari: Oreta tsue producer
1973 Mute Samurai Oshi samurai (TV series) executive producer
1973 Zatoichi's Conspiracy Shin Zatôichi monogatari: Kasama no chimatsuri
1973 Hanzo the Razor: The Snare Goyôkiba: Kamisori Hanzô jigoku zeme
1974 Yadonashi producer
1974 Hanzo the Razor: Who's Got the Gold? Goyôkiba: Oni no Hanzô yawahada koban producer
1974 Akumyo: Notorious Dragon Akumyo: shima arashiaka
1980 Shogun Assassin producer
1989 Shintaro Katsu's Zatoichi Zatôichi

As director[edit]

Year Title Japanese Romanization
1971 Kaoyaku
1972 Zatoichi in Desperation Shin Zatôichi monogatari: Oreta tsue
1973 Mute Samurai Oshi samurai (TV series)
1974 Zatôichi monogatari (TV series)
(episode "A Memorial Day and the Bell of Life")
1989 Zatoichi: Darkness Is His Ally Zatôichi

As writer[edit]

Year Title Japanese Romanization
1970 Zatoichi at the Fire Festival Zatôichi abare-himatsuri
1971 Kaoyaku
1989 Zatoichi: Darkness Is His Ally Zatôichi

As himself[edit]

Year Film Film type
1978 The Blind Swordsman Documentary

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b West, David (2006). Chasing dragons: an introduction to the martial arts film. I.B.Tauris. p. 33. ISBN 978-1-85043-982-0. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  2. ^ Standish, Isolde (8 May 2006). A New History of Japanese Cinema: A Century Of Narrative Film. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 359. ISBN 978-0-8264-1790-9. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  3. ^ Galloway, Patrick (1 May 2005). Stray Dogs & Lone Wolves: The Samurai Film Handbook. Stone Bridge Press, Inc. p. 184. ISBN 978-1-880656-93-8. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  4. ^ Kurosawa, Akira; Cardullo, Bert (2008). Akira Kurosawa: Interviews. Univ. Press of Mississippi. p. 68. ISBN 978-1-57806-997-2. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  5. ^ Cowie, Peter (1981). International Film Guide. Tantivy Press. p. 205. ISBN 978-0-498-02530-3. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Nogami, Teruyo (2006). Waiting on the Weather: Making Movies with Akira Kurosawa. Stone Bridge Press, Inc. pp. 251–60. ISBN 978-1-933330-09-9. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  7. ^ Galloway, Patrick (1 May 2005). Stray Dogs & Lone Wolves: The Samurai Film Handbook. Stone Bridge Press, Inc. p. 40. ISBN 978-1-880656-93-8. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 

External links[edit]