Bunta Sugawara

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Bunta Sugawara
Bunta Sugawara.jpg
Born(1933-08-16)August 16, 1933
Died November 28, 2014(2014-11-28) (aged 81)
Tokyo, Japan
OccupationActor
Years active1956–2012

Bunta Sugawara (菅原 文太, Sugawara Bunta, (1933-08-16)August 16, 1933 – November 28, 2014) was a Japanese actor who appeared in almost 200 Japanese feature films.

Life and career[edit]

Acting[edit]

Bunta Sugawara was born in Sendai in 1933.[1] His parents divorced when he was four, and he moved to Tokyo to live with his father and stepmother. As part of a wartime policy to evacuate children from major cities, he was moved back to Sendai during fourth grade. As an adult he entered Waseda University's law program, but was dropped in his second year for failing to pay and began work as a model in 1956.[2]

His first acting role was in the 1956 Toho film Aishu no Machi ni Kiri ga Furu. Sugawara appeared in Teruo Ishii's 1958 White Line after being scouted by the Shintoho studio.[2] At Shintoho he gained starring roles despite being a newcomer.[3] However, when Shintoho filed for bankruptcy in 1961, Sugawara moved to the Shochiku studio where he was cast in Masahiro Shinoda's Shamisen and Motorcycle, but was fired from the role for coming to set late after a night drinking. He gave a notable performance in Keisuke Kinoshita's Legend of a Duel to the Death (1963), but it did not fare well at the box office.[2] Disenchanted with the low pay, and what he felt were unsuitable roles, he left and went to Toei in 1967 after being recommended by Noboru Ando.[3]

He had a part in Ishii's 1967 Abashiri Bangaichi: Fubuki no Toso, one of many films in the director's Abashiri Prison series. Sugawara's first starring role at Toei was in Gendai Yakuza: Yotamono no Okite in 1969. It launched a series, with the last installment, 1972's Street Mobster by Kinji Fukasaku, being the most successful.[2] He achieved major success in 1973 at the age of 40, when he starred in Fukasaku's five-part yakuza epic Battles Without Honor and Humanity. Based on a real-life yakuza conflict in Hiroshima, the series was very successful, and popularized a new type of yakuza film called the Jitsuroku eiga, and the role of Shōzō Hirono still remains his most well known. Sugawara also starred in Fukasaku's Cops vs. Thugs in 1975. Also in 1975, he starred in the comedy Torakku Yarō: Go-Iken Muyō as a love-seeking truck driver, which launched a successful ten-installment series.[2] Sugawara won the 1980 Japan Academy Prize for Best Supporting Actor for his role as a detective in Kazuhiko Hasegawa's 1979 satirical film Taiyō o Nusunda Otoko.[4]

His son Kaoru died in a railroad crossing accident in October 2001.[5]

On February 23, 2012, Sugawara announced his retirement from acting. He came to the decision after the Great East Japan earthquake and being hospitalized in the winter of 2011, although he said he might consider future roles.[6] Late in life, he took up farming in Yamanashi Prefecture.[7]

On December 1, 2014, it was announced that Sugawara had died from liver cancer in a Tokyo hospital on November 28, 2014.[4][7][8]

Filmography[edit]

Films[edit]

  • Aishu no machi ni kiri ga furu (1956)
  • Shirosen himitsu chitai (1958) - Goto , Sudo's Henchman
  • Joôbachi no ikari (1958) - Jôji
  • Mofubuki no shito (1959) - Kinya
  • Ama no bakemono yashiki (1959) - Detective Nonomiya
  • Kurutta yokubô (1959)
  • Kyûjûkyû-honme no kimusume (1959) - Abe Masayuki
  • Onna dorei-sen (1960) - Sugawa
  • Bakudan wo Daku Onna Kaitô (1960) - Asakura - Railroad Security Officer
  • Taiheiyô Sensô: Nazo no senkan Mutsu (1960) - Naval officer
  • Kuroi chibusa (1960) - Hiroshi Taniguchi
  • Mejû (1960) - Sugiyama
  • Otoko no sekai da (1960)
  • Bôryoku Gonin Musume (1960) - Kazuhiko Nanjô
  • Fûryû kokkei-tan: Sennin buraku (1961)
  • Shamisen to ootobai (1961)
  • Shitô no densetsu (1963) - Gôichi Takamori
  • Miagete goran yoru no hoshi o (1963) - Miwa
  • Iroboke yokuboke monogatari (1963)
  • Kô ni kieta aitsu (1963)
  • Kawachi no kaze yôri-abare daikô (1963)
  • Kôge - Nibu: Mitsumata no shô (1964)
  • Kôge - Ichibu: Waremokô no shô (1964) - Sugiura
  • Kodoku (1964)
  • Nippon paradaisu (1964)
  • Yoru no henrin (1964) - Tamura
  • Kuchikukan yukikaze (1964)
  • Chi to okite (1965)
  • Blood and Rules (1965)
  • Highway No Ohsama (1965)
  • Zokû seiun yakuza - ikarî no otoko (1965)
  • Seiun yakuza (1965)
  • Kao o kase (1966)
  • Honoo to okite (1966) - Ôtsu
  • Otokonokao wa rirekisho (1966)
  • Sora ippai no namida (1966) - Sakaki
  • Kinokawa (1966) - School principal
  • Ahendaichi jigokubutai totsugekseyo (1966)
  • Shinka 101: Koroshi no Yojinbo (1966)
  • Otoko no kon (1966)
  • Dôsu-dokyô no hanamichi (1966)
  • Abashiri Bangaichi: Fubuki no Toso (1967) - Mamushi
  • Utage (1967) - Lieutenant Kuruihara
  • Zenka mono (1968)
  • Gorotsuki (1968)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Isshuku ippan (1968) - Shiraishi
  • Bakuto retsuden (1968) - Masakichi
  • Kyôdai jingi gyakuen no sakazuki (1968)
  • Kaibyô nori no numa (1968) - Ukon Shibayama
  • Heitai gokudo (1968)
  • Gokudo (1968) - Sasaki Toshiya
  • Gokuaku bôzu (1968) - Ryotatsu
  • Furyô banchô: Inoshika Ochô (1969)
  • Tabi ni deta gokudo (1969)
  • Gendai Yakuza: Yotamono Jingi (1969) - Goro
  • Yakuza keibatsu-shi: Rinchi! (1969)
  • Nihon boryoku-dan: Kumicho (a.k.a. Japan Organized Crime Boss) (1969)
  • Kantô Tekiya ikka (1969)
  • Soshiki Bōryoku Kyodaisakazuki (1969)
  • Nihon boryoku-dan: Kumicho (1969) - Kazama
  • Gorotsuki butai (1969)
  • Gokuaku bôzu: nenbutsu hitokiri tabi (1969)
  • Gendai yakuza: Yotamono no okite (1969)
  • Furyo bancho okuri ookami (1969)
  • Chôeki san kyôdai (1969)
  • Chi-zome no daimon (a.k.a. Bloodstained Clan Honor) (1970)
  • Kantô Tekiya ikka: Goromen jingi (1970)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Oryû sanjô (1970) - Tsunejioro
  • Furyô banchô: Ikkaku senkin (1970)
  • Kantô Tekiya ikka: Tennôji no kettô (1970)
  • Nippon dabi katsukyu (1970)
  • Saigo no tokkôtai (1970)
  • Gokuaku bozu hitokiri kazoe uta (1970) - Ryutatsu
  • Hitokiri kannon-uta (1970) - Blind Priest Ryotatsu
  • Gendai yakuza: Shinjuku no yotamono (1970) - Big Brother Katsumata
  • Shin kyôdai jingi (1970)
  • Sengo hiwa, hoseki ryakudatsu (1970)
  • Nihon jokyo-den: tekka geisha (1970) - Yukichi
  • Gokudo kyojo tabi (1970) - Izumi Tatsuya
  • Gokuaku bozu nenbutsu sandangiri (1970)
  • Gendai ninkyô kyôdai-bun (1970)
  • Furyo bancho kuchi kara demakase (1970)
  • Bâkuto jingi: sâkazukî (1970)
  • Kantô Tekiya ikka: Goromen himatsuri (1971)
  • Gokuaku bozu - Nomu utsu kau (1971)
  • Kigeki toruko-buro osho-sen (1971)
  • Kantô kyôdai jingi ninkyô (1971) - Takazaki Taichiro
  • Nippon jokyô-den: Gekitô Himeyuri-misaki (1971)
  • Gendai yakuza: Chizakura san kyodai (1971)
  • Onna toseinin: ota no mushimasu (1971)
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Orei mairi (1971)
  • Gendai yakuza: Sakazuki kaeshimasu (1971)
  • Furyo bancho yarazu buttakuri (1971)
  • Chōeki Tarō: Mamushi no Kyōdai (1971)
  • Akû oyabûn tai daigashî (1971)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Jingi tooshimasu (1972)
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Chôeki jûsankai (1972)
  • Junko intai kinen eiga: Kantô hizakura ikka (1972) - Yuijiro
  • Gendai Yakuza: Hitokiri Yota (a.k.a. Street Mobster) (1972) - Isamu Okita
  • Gokudo makari touru (1972) - Ishido Tsuneo
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Shôgai kyôkatsu jûhappan (1972)
  • Kogarashi Monjirô: Kakawari gozansen (1972) - Monjirô Kogarashi
  • Outlaw Killers: Three Mad Dog Brothers (1972)
  • Hijirimen bakuto (1972)
  • Yakuza to kôsô: Jitsuroku Andô-gumi (1972)
  • Kogarashi Monjirô (1972) - Monjirô
  • Furyo gai (1972)
  • Bakuchi-uchi Gaiden (1972)
  • Battles Without Honor and Humanity (1973) - Shozo Hirono
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Musho gurashi yonen-han (1973)
  • Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Deadly Fight in Hiroshima (1973) - Shozo Hirono
  • Yakuza tai G-men (1973) - Lee Chung Shun, Narcotics Group Boss
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Kyôkatsu san-oku-en (1973)
  • Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok (1973)
  • Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Proxy War (1973) - Shozo Hirono
  • Yokosuka Navy Prison (1973)
  • Yamaguchi-gumi San-daime (1973) - Big Boss Hachiro
  • Kâigun o shu ga kêimushyô (1973)
  • Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Police Tactics (1974) - Shozo Hirono
  • Gakusei yakuza (1974)
  • Bôryoku gai (1974) - Gizagoro's dragon
  • Lubang tô no kiseki: Rikugun Nakano gakkô (1974)
  • Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Final Episode (1974) - Shozo Hirono
  • Gokudo VS Mamushi (1974)
  • Andô-gumi gaiden: Hitokiri shatei (1974)
  • New Battles Without Honor and Humanity (1974) - Miyoshi Makio
  • Mamushi no kyôdai: Futari awasete sanjuppan (1974) - Masataro of Mamushi's
  • Jitsuroku hishyakaku ôkami domo no jingi (1974) - Ishikuro Hikoichi
  • Â kessen kôkûtai (1974)
  • Mamushi to aodaishô (1975) - Goromasa
  • Dai dâtsu gokû (1975)
  • Daidatsugoku (1975) - Kunizo Kuniiwa
  • Cops vs. Thugs (1975) - Detective Kuno
  • Torakku yarô: Goiken muyô (1975) - Momojirô Hoshi - Ichibanboshi
  • Kobe Kokusai Gang (1975) - Kenzo Otaki
  • New Battles Without Honor and Humanity: The Boss's Head (1975) - Shuji Kuroda
  • Torakku yarô: Bakusô Ichibanboshi (1975)
  • New Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Last Days of the Boss (1976) - Shuichi Nozaki
  • Torakku yarô: Bôkyô Ichibanboshi (1976)
  • Baka Masa Hora Masa Toppa Masa (1976) - Bakamasa
  • Torakku yarô: tenka gomen (1976)
  • Yamaguchi-gumi gaiden: Kyushu shinko-sakusen (1977) - Yozakura
  • Yakuza senso: Nihon no Don (1977) - Eizo Iwami
  • Nihon no jingi (1977)
  • Torakku yarô: Dokyô ichibanboshi (1977)
  • Bokusâ (1977) - Hayato, ex-boxer
  • Nippon no Don: Yabohen (1977) - Shinsuke Tembo
  • Torakku yarô: Otoko ippiki momojirô (1977)
  • Shinjuku yoidore banchi: Hitokiri tetsu (1977)
  • Inubue (1978) - Shiro Akitsu
  • Torakku yarô: Totsugeki ichiban hoshi (1978) - Hoshi Momojiro
  • Dynamite Dondon (1978) - Kasuke
  • Nihon no Don: Kanketsuhen (1978) - Akira Kawanishi
  • Yokohama ankokugai mashingan no ryu (1978) - Ryuta Yabuki
  • Torakku yarô: Ichiban hoshi kita e kaeru (1978) - Hoshi Momojiro
  • Sochô no kubi (1979) - Hachiyo Shunji
  • Ogon no inu (1979) - Lorry driver
  • Torakku yarô: Neppû 5000 kiro (1979) - Hoshi Momojiro
  • Taiyō o Nusunda Otoko (1979) - Inspector Yamashita
  • Dabide no hoshi: Bishôjo-gari (1979) - Momojirô Hoshi
  • Torakku yarô: Furusato tokkyûbin (1979) - Hoshi Momojiro
  • Jingi naki tatakai: Sôshûhen (1980) - Shozo Hirono
  • The Gate of Youth (1981) - Shigezo Ibuki
  • Honō no Gotoku (1981) - Senkichi Kotetsu
  • Yûkai hôdô (1982) - Pilot
  • Seiha (1982) - Koji Kawakami
  • Shura no mure (1984)
  • The Burmese Harp (1985) - Platoon Commander
  • Rokumeikan (1986) - Count Kageyama
  • Eiga joyû (1987) - Kenji Mizoguchi
  • Kuroi doresu no onna (1987) - Shoji
  • Za samurai (1987) - Samurai
  • Tsuru (1988) - Rich man
  • Yawara! (1989) - Kumajiro inokuma
  • My Phoenix (1989)
  • Rimeinzu: Utsukushiki yuusha-tachi (19900 - Kasuke
  • Tekken (1990) - Seiji Nakamoto
  • Distant Justice (1992) - Rio Yuki
  • The Man Who Shot the Don (1994)
  • Kizu darake no tenshi (1997) - Joji Kurai
  • Dora-heita (2000) - Nadanamiya Hachirobe, aka Daikashi no Nadahachi
  • Watashi no Grandpa (2003) - Godai Kenzo
  • The Great Yokai War (2005) - Shuntaro Ino
  • The Battery (2007) - Yozo Ioka
  • Chikyû de tatta futari (2008)

Anime[edit]

Television[edit]

Video games[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bunta Sugawara" (in Japanese). Yahoo! Japan. Archived from the original on 2012-03-03. Retrieved 2012-05-04.
  2. ^ a b c d e Schilling, Mark (2003). The Yakuza Movie Book : A Guide to Japanese Gangster Films. Stone Bridge Press. pp. 130–143. ISBN 1-880656-76-0.
  3. ^ a b "Confessions of a con artist". Japan Times. 2003-04-02. Retrieved 2012-05-04.
  4. ^ a b "Japanese Gangster Movie Icon Bunta Sugawara Dead At 81". Variety. 2014-12-01. Retrieved 2014-12-04.
  5. ^ "Battles Without Honor and Humanity Actor Bunta Sugawara Passes Away". Anime News Network. 2014-12-01. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  6. ^ "Bunta Retires From Big Screen". Japan Zone. 2012-02-24. Retrieved 2012-05-04.
  7. ^ a b "Renowned actor Bunta Sugawara dies at 81". Mainichi Shimbun. 2014-12-01. Archived from the original on 2014-12-04. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  8. ^ "菅原文太さん ご逝去について". 東映株式会社. 2014-12-01. Retrieved 2014-12-01.

External links[edit]