Kinuyo Tanaka

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Kinuyo Tanaka
Kinuyo Tanaka in Jinsei no onimotsu 1935.jpg
Kinuyo Tanaka in Jinsei no onimotsu (1935)
Born (1909-11-29)November 29, 1909
Shimonoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan
Died March 21, 1977(1977-03-21) (aged 67)
Years active 1924–1976
Spouse(s) Hiroshi Shimizu (1927–1929, not legally married)
Awards Mainichi Film Concours Best Actress
1975 Sandakan No. 8
1949 Yoru no onnatachi
1948 Joyū Sumako no koi
Mainichi Film Concours Best Supporting Actress
1961 Otōto
1958 Stepbrothers
Screenwriter Yoshikata Yoda, Actress-Director Kinuyo Tanaka, and Director Kenji Mizoguchi visit Paris, 1953

Kinuyo Tanaka (田中 絹代 Tanaka Kinuyo?, 29 November 1909 – 21 March 1977) was a Japanese actress and director.

Tanaka was born in Shimonoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan. She became a leading actress at an early age, appearing in Yasujirō Ozu's I Graduated, But... in 1929. The following year she played the lead in Aiyoku no ki, and in 1931 she appeared in Japan's first talkie, The Neighbor's Wife and Mine, directed by Heinosuke Gosho.

She had a close working relationship with director Kenji Mizoguchi, having parts in 15 of his films, including leading roles in The Life of Oharu (1952), Ugetsu (1953) and Sansho the Bailiff (1954). Their working relationship ended when Mizoguchi countered a recommendation from the Directors Guild of Japan for the Nikkatsu studio to hire her as a director. Despite this, the production of her second film as director went ahead, but Tanaka never forgave Mizoguchi, and the reasons for his behaviour are unclear.[1] She also played Noboru Yasumoto's mother in Akira Kurosawa's Red Beard (1965). For her performance in Kei Kumai's Sandakan N° 8 she won the Best Actress Award at the 25th Berlin International Film Festival in 1975.[2] Her last screen appearance was in 1976 in Kei Kumai's Kita No Misaki.

Tanaka was the second Japanese woman who worked as a film director, after Sakane Tazuko (1904‐1975). Her first directing job was on the film Love Letter in 1953, and she made five further films in that role.

Selected filmography[edit]


She has appeared in more than 259 films[3] (incomplete)



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tony Rayns video essays in the Masters of Cinema edition of Chikamatsu Monogatari/Uwasa no onna set.
  2. ^ "Berlinale 1975: Prize Winners". Retrieved 2010-07-11. 
  3. ^ 258 films according to 田中絹代 (in Japanese). Japanese Movie Database. Retrieved 2009-12-05.  and plus 1 film Kōge(香華)

External links[edit]