Frankie Sakai in 1956
|Born||Masatoshi Sakai (堺 正俊 Sakai Masatoshi)
13 February 1929
|Died||10 June 1996
|Occupation||Film actor, comedian, musician|
Frankie Sakai (フランキー堺 Furankī Sakai) (13 February 1929 – 10 June 1996) was a Japanese comedian, actor, and musician.
From his days at Keio University, Sakai worked as a jazz drummer at American Army camps during the Occupation of Japan, often doing comic routines with his music. Becoming a professional comedian, he appeared in many famous film comedies such as Sun in the Last Days of the Shogunate and the Shachō and Ekimae series at the Toho Studios. He was named best actor at the Blue Ribbon Awards for his work in Sun in the Last Days of the Shogunate and Shiawase wa orera no negai.
He also appeared in musicals such as Kimi mo shusse ga dekiru, serious dramas such as I Want to Be a Shellfish, and kaiju eiga like Mothra. He was also known for his personal study of the ukiyo-e artist Sharaku and helped produce the film Sharaku directed by Masahiro Shinoda. He is best known to American audiences for his dramatic role in the 1980s television production of Shōgun in which he played the part of Lord Yabu.
He died of liver failure on 10 June 1996 at the age of 67.
- Midori haruka ni (緑はるかに, lit. "Beyond the Green") (1955)
- Sun in the Last Days of the Shogunate (幕末太陽伝 Bakumatsu Taiyōden, lit. "Records of the Sun in the Last Days of the Shogunate") (1957)
- Shiawase wa orera no negai (倖せは俺等のねがい, lit. "Happiness Is Our Wish") (1957)
- I Want to Be a Shellfish (私は貝になりたい Watashi wa Kai ni Naritai) (1958)
- The Bride from Japan (花嫁さんは世界一 Hanayome-san wa Sekaiichi, lit. "Mrs. Bride Is the Number One in the World") (1959)
- Mothra (モスラ Mosura) (1961)
- The Last War (世界大戦争 Sekai Daisensō) lit. "Great World War" (1961)
- Kimi mo shusse ga dekiru (君も出世ができる, lit. "You Can Also Ascend") (1964)
- Shōgun as Lord Kashigi Yabu, Daimyo of Izu (1980)
- Shinran: Path to Purity (親鸞 白い道 Shinran: Shiroi Michi) (1987)
- Sharaku (写楽 Sharaku) (1995)
- Onna Taikōki (1981) – Tokugawa Ieyasu