Kento Yamazaki

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Kento Yamazaki
Yamazaki Kento

(1994-09-07) September 7, 1994 (age 26)
OccupationActor, Model
Years active2010–present
AgentStardust Promotion
Height1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
WebsiteKento Yamazaki

Kento Yamazaki (山﨑賢人, Yamazaki Kento, born September 7, 1994 in Itabashi, Tokyo) is a Japanese actor and model.[1][2] He is best known for his role as L in the live-action television series Death Note (2015), and as the lead Minato Shindo in the Japanese medical drama remake Good Doctor (2018), as well as starring in films L DK (2014), Heroine Shikkaku (2015) and Orange (2015). He is under the Japanese talent Agency Stardust Promotion.[3]

Early life[edit]

Kento Yamazaki was born in Tokyo to a middle-class family. He lives with his father, mother and older brother. He has stated that, despite being thin and athletic as a child, he was a big eater, and that he really loved playing soccer, and had been playing soccer since 2nd grade until his 3rd year in middle school- he even joined a club team and would go to different school yards to practice. He claimed in interviews that as a child he dreamt of being a soccer player, and that if he had not become an actor he would have become a professional soccer player, or coach of the national team. His first modelling offer came during his third year of junior high school when he was scouted by his current agency at Takeshita Dori (Harajuku) whilst on his way home after a soccer match.[4][5] He worked as a model for the magazine Pichi Lemon from 2009 to 2011, before entering the acting world.[6]


Kento debuted as an actor in 2010 when he was cast in the TV series Atami no Sousakan as a mysterious high school student. That was followed by a supporting role in TV series Clone Baby, where he played a hacker.

Kento's first movie was Control Tower which was released in April 2011.[7] He sang and played the guitar in this movie, and his acting was well received. The next year, he appeared in The Wings of the Kirin (2012) and as the lead in the horror thriller film Another, working with Control Tower co-star Ai Hashimoto for the second time. He was later cast in the following films: The Chasing World 3[8] and Live action of Love for Beginners. In 2013, he led a film with a LGBT theme, Sato Family Breakfast, which aired on TV (BS Japan). He also participated in the 2nd Taiwan International Queer Film Festival (TIQFF) in 2015. Besides that, he took on a supporting role in the film JINX!!! and the TV series 35-sai no Koukousei. In 2014, he starred in a film based on the highly successful manga of the same name, L DK alongside Ayame Goriki.[9] The film was a breakthrough in his career, making him further known to the public. That year, he also played different roles in three drama series, including Baseball Brainiacs, where he was cast with actors Sota Fukushi and Yuto Nakajima.[10] He also made his stage debut as main lead Inuzuka Shino in Satomi Hakkenden. In 2015, he was again cast in a film adaptation of a popular manga titled Heroine Shikkaku alongside Mirei Kiritani.[11] He also played the lead role in Orange alongside Tao Tsuchiya.[12] The film was a great success, grossing almost US$28 million and becoming the 9th-highest-grossing Japanese films of 2016.[13][14][15] From those two films, he won the 39th Japan Academy Prize for Newcomers of the Year and was also nominated at 2016 Hochi Film Awards. That same year, he appeared in the television adaptation of the famous manga Death Note as L, and the NHK Asadora Mare, which was led by the aforementioned Tsuchiya Tao.

In 2016, Kento was cast in Your Lie in April where he played the role of Kosei Arima, a gifted pianist, alongside Suzu Hirose, who portrayed Kaori Miyazono.[16] For this role, Kento learned to play the piano and practiced for 6 months before the filming started.[17] Thereafter, he was cast in the live action adaptation of Wolf Girl and Black Prince and the TV series A Girl & Three Sweethearts. Kento was also chosen to star in a special short film to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Yasuhisa Hara's historical manga Kingdom[18] as the main character, Shin. He will reprise his role in the live action feature film which will be released on April 19, 2019.[19] In 2017, he co-starred with Haruna Kawaguchi in One Week Friends.[20] The film received positive ratings from critics, which mostly praised Kento for successfully portraying the cheerful and friendly Yuki Hase. Afterwards, he appeared in a few more live action movies; JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable Chapter I, Psychic Kusuo: The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. and Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets. Towards the end of 2017, he starred in the TV series Rikuoh.[21]

In January 2018, Kento played the lead role of a top nightclub host for the NTV winter drama Kiss that Kills, his first lead role in a drama,[22] which also starred Mugi Kadowaki, Mackenyu and Masaki Suda. His film A Forest of Wool and Steel was released too, where he portrayed a piano tuner.[23] For preparation, Kento lived in Hokkaido to learn and practice piano tuning. The Emperor and Empress of Japan attended a special screening of the film and met with the cast.[24][25] In the summer of 2018, Kento was cast in the TV series Good Doctor[26] -based on the 2013 Korean drama of the same name, it tells the story of a young autistic man who becomes a pediatric surgeon. The drama received a positive response from viewers, and it was the first time he acted as a doctor and took on a more unconventional role. It earned him the Television Drama Academy Award for Best Actor.[27][28][29]

His next major project after Kingdom is live action film of Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku, which is release in February 2020.



Year Title Role Network Notes Ref
2010 Atami no Sousakan Shinya Shijima TV Asahi [30]
Clone Baby Jotaro TBS [31]
2011 Runaways: For Your Love Panda TBS [32]
2012 Miss Double Faced Teacher Shunsuke Yasuda TBS [33]
2013 No Dropping Out: Back to School at 35 Ryo Akutsu NTV [34]
Sato Family’s Breakfast, Suzuki Family’s Dinner Takumi Sato BS Japan TV movie [35]
2014 Team Batista 4: Raden Meikyu Aoi Sakuranomiya Fuji TV [36]
Water Polo Yankees Ryuji Mifune Fuji TV [37]
Baseball Brainiacs Kōki Ebato NTV [38]
2015 Mare Keita Kontani NHK Asadora [39]
Eternal Us Sea Side Blue Taku Nagata NTV TV movie [40]
Death Note L NTV [41]
2016 A Girl & Three Sweethearts Kanata Shibasaki Fuji TV [42]
2017 Rikuoh Daichi Miyazawa TBS   [43]
2018 Kiss that Kills Ōtarō Dōjima NTV Lead role [44]
Good Doctor Minato Shindō Fuji TV Lead role [45]
From Today, It's My Turn!! Katori NTV episode 10, cameo [46]
2019 Time Limit Investigator 2019 Shota Amaya TV Asahi episode 8 [47]
2020 Only I Am 17 Years Old [Passer-by] Abema TV episode 4, cameo [48]
2020–present Alice in Borderland Ryōhei Arisu Netflix Lead role, 2 seasons [49]


Year Title Role Director Notes Ref
2011 Control Tower Kakeru Takahiro Miki Lead [50]
2012 The Wings of the Kirin Tatsuya Sugino Nobuhiro Doi [50]
Another Kōichi Sakakibara Takeshi Furusawa Lead [51]
The Chasing World 3 & 5 Suguru Mari Asato Lead [50]
Love for Beginners Nishiki Hasegawa Takeshi Furusawa [50]
2013 JINX!!! Yūsuke Nomura Naoto Kumazawa [50]
2014 L DK Shūsei Kugayama Taisuke Kawamura Lead [52]
2015 No Longer Heroine Rita Terasaka Tsutomu Hanabusa Lead [53]
Orange Kakeru Naruse Kōjirō Hashimoto Lead [50]
2016 Your Lie in April Kōsei Arima Takehiko Shinjō Lead [50]
Wolf Girl and Black Prince Kyōya Sata Ryūichi Hiroki Lead [50]
Yo-Kai Watch The Movie 3: A Whale of Two Worlds King Enma Shinji Ushiro [50]
2017 One Week Friends Yūki Hase Shōsuke Murakami Lead [50]
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable Chapter I Jōsuke Higashikata Takashi Miike Lead [54]
Psychic Kusuo: The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. Kusuo Saiki Yūichi Fukuda Lead [50]
Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets Hōtarō Oreki Mari Asato Lead [50]
2018 A Forest of Wool and Steel Naoki Tomura Kōjirō Hashimoto Lead [50]
2019 Kingdom Xin Shinsuke Sato Lead [55]
Ni no Kuni Yū (voice) Yoshiyuki Momose Lead [56]
2020 Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku Hirotaka Nifuji Yūichi Fukuda Lead [50]
Theatre: A Love Story Nagata Isao Yukisada Lead [57]
Crazy Samurai Musashi Chūsuke Yūji Shimomura [58]
2021 The Door into Summer Sōichirō Takakura Takahiro Miki Lead [59]
TBA Kingdom 2 Xin Shinsuke Sato Lead [60]

Music videos appearances[edit]

Year Song Artist Ref.
2011 Ressha Karasu [61]
2018 Sayonara Elegy Masaki Suda [62]

Stage performances[edit]

  • 2014 里見八犬伝 / Satomi Hakkenden role: Inuzuka Shino (Lead) [63]
  • 2017 里見八犬伝 / Satomi Hakkenden (2017) role: Inuzuka Shino (Lead) [64]



  • Yamazaki Kento "You Are Here"(Genzaichi) (Wani Books, 27 March 2014) ISBN 9784847046292[65]
  • The Kentos (Tokyo News Service, 17 December 2014) ISBN 9784863364462[66]
  • Scene #20 (KADOKAWA, 26 September 2015) ISBN 9784047319813[67]
  • 山﨑賢人写真集「KENTO YAMAZAKI」 (KADOKAWA, 24 April 2019) ISBN 9784048963695[68]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result Ref.
2016 39th Japan Academy Film Prize Newcomer of the Year Orange, Heroine Shikkaku Won [69]
41st Hochi Film Award Best New Artist Nominated
2018 96th Television Drama Academy Awards Best Actor Kiss that Kills Nominated [70]
98th Television Drama Academy Awards Best Actor Good Doctor Won [71]
Beijing IQiyi Scream Night Award Asian Newcomer of The Year Good Doctor, Kiss That Kills Won [72]
2020 Forbes Asia 100 Digital Stars Placed [73]


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