Tomisaburo Wakayama

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Tomisaburō Wakayama
Tomisaburō Wakayama
Wakayama appearing as Ogami Ittō in
the Lone Wolf and Cub movie series
Born
Masaru Okumura

(1929-09-01)September 1, 1929
DiedApril 2, 1992(1992-04-02) (aged 62)
Kyoto, Japan
OccupationActor
Years active1955–1991
Spouse(s)Reiko Fujiwara (1963–1965)[citation needed]

Tomisaburō Wakayama (若山 富三郎, Wakayama Tomisaburō, September 1, 1929 – April 2, 1992), born Masaru Okumura (奥村 勝),[1] was a Japanese actor best known for playing Ogami Ittō, the scowling, 19th century ronin warrior in the six Lone Wolf and Cub samurai movies.[1][2]

Biography[edit]

Wakayama was born on September 1, 1929, in Fukagawa, a district in Tokyo, Japan.[1] His father was Minoru Okumura (奥村 実), a noted kabuki performer and nagauta singer who went by the stage name Katsutōji Kineya (杵屋 勝東治)[3][1], and the family as a whole were kabuki performers. He and his younger brother, Shintaro Katsu, followed their father in the theater.[1] Wakayama tired of this; at the age of 13, he began to study judo, eventually achieving the rank of 4th dan black belt in the art.[1]

In 1952, as part of the Azuma Kabuki troupe, Wakayama toured the United States of America for nine months.[2] He gave up theater performance completely after his two-year term with the troupe was over.[1] Wakayama taught judo until Toho recruited him as a new martial arts star in their jidaigeki movies.[1] He prepared for these movies by practicing other disciplines, including kenpō, iaidō, kendo, and bōjutsu.[1] All this helped him for roles in the television series The Mute Samurai,[3] the 1975 television series Shokin Kasegi (The Bounty Hunter),[3] and his most famous role: Ogami Ittō, the Lone Wolf.

Wakayama went on to star in many films, performing in a variety of roles. It has been estimated that he appeared in between 250 and 500 films.[3] His only roles in American movies were as a baseball coach in The Bad News Bears Go to Japan (1978) and as a yakuza boss, Sugai, in Ridley Scott's Black Rain (1989) that delivers a memorable English monologue that becomes a defining moment for the film, and the film's title.[3][4]

Wakayama died of acute heart failure on April 2, 1992, in a hospital in Kyoto.[1][3] He was survived by a son, Kiichirō Wakayama (若山 騎一郎) born in 1964, also an actor.[5]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Wakayama appeared in the following films, amongst others.

1930[edit]

  • Aizu no Kotetsu (1930)

1955–1959[edit]

  • Banba no Chûtarô (1955) - Banba no Chutaro
  • Uta matsuri mangetsu tanuki-gassen (1955)
  • Gyakushu orochimaru (1955) - Toyama Yunosuke
  • Silver Snake Iwashiya (1956)
  • Yotsuya kaidan (1956) - Iemon Tamiya
  • Ningyô Sashichi torimonochô: Yôen roku shibijin (1956) - Ningyo Sashichi
  • Yôun Satomi kaikyoden (1956) - Inuzuka Shino
  • Ningyô Sashichi torimonochô: Ôedo Ushimitsudoki (1957) - Ningyo Sashichi
  • Ningyô Sashichi torimonochô: Hanayome Satsujinma (1957) - Ningyo Sashichi
  • Kanhasshû ken kajin (1958)
  • Ningyô Sashichi torimonochô: Ukiyoburo no Shibijin (1958) - Ningyo Sashichi
  • Ningyô Sashichi torimonochô: Koshimoto Irezumi Shibijin (1958) - Ningyo Sashichi
  • Doto no taiketsu (1959)
  • Fukaku hichô (1959)
  • Fukaku hichô: kanketsuhen (1959)
  • Chiyari musô (1959)
  • Hibari torimonochô: furisode koban (1959)
  • Yukinojô henge (1959)
  • Hayate monzaburo (1959)
  • Rage (1959)

1960-1969[edit]

  • Hibari no mori no ishimatsu (1960) - Shimizu No Jirocho - Boss Of The Tokaido
  • Tenpô rokkasen - Jigoku no hanamichi (1960)
  • Jirochô kesshôki: Nagurikomi kôjinyama (1960) - Okita Soji
  • Tenryu haha koi gasa (1960)
  • Shoretsu shinsengumi - bakumatsu no doran (1960) - Okita Soji
  • Oja kissa (1960)
  • Ninkyo Nakasendo (1960) - Omasa
  • Hibari Juhachiban Benten Kozo (1960)
  • Hachisu chikemuri gasa (1961)
  • Yami ni warau tekkamen (1961)
  • Tekka Daimyo ("Lord of Steel Heart") (1961)
  • Ghost of Oiwa (1961)
  • Megitsune henge (1961)
  • Kengo tengu matsuri (1961) - Iishiro Shurinosuke
  • Kaidan Oiwa no borei (1961) - Tamiya Iemon
  • Charinko kaido (1961)
  • Kisaragi musô ken (1962) - Hayatomasa Tachibana
  • Seizoroi kanhasshu (1962)
  • Zatoichi 2 (1962)[3]- Nagisa no Yoshirō (credited as Jō Kenzaburō)
  • Ninja 1 (1962) - Oda Nobunaga
  • Love for a Mother (1962)
  • Shinsengumi shimatsuki (1963) - Isami Kondô
  • Teuchi (1963) - Shindo Genjiro
  • Kaidan onibi no numa (1963) - Saburôta Nishina
  • Ninja 2 (1963) - Oda Nobunaga
  • Ninja 3 (1963) - Oda Nobunaga
  • Maiko to ansatsusha (1963)
  • Yôsô (1963) - Prime Minister
  • Sleepy Eyes of Death: The Chinese Jade (1963) - Chen Sun
  • Hana no kodokan (1963)
  • Zatoichi and the Chest of Gold (1964)[3] - Jushiro
  • Shinobi no mono: Zoku Kirigakure Saizô (1964) - Sanada Yukimura
  • Meiji taitei goichidaiki (1964) - Soldier charging Chinese fortress
  • Sleepy Eyes of Death: Sword of Seduction (1964) - Chen Sun
  • Ninja 4 (1964) - Sanada Yukimura
  • Gaijin bôchi no ketto (1964)
  • Virgin Witnessed (1966) - Gyôshun
  • A Brave Generous Era (1966)
  • Ôtazune mono shichinin (1966)
  • Fraternal Honor: Three Brothers of Kanto (1966) - Akoshima Isamu
  • Bakuchiuchi ("The Gambler) (1967)[6]
  • Zoku Toseinin (1967) - Sakamoto
  • Toseinin (1967) - Hirose
  • Hokkai yûkyôden (1967)
  • Choueki juhachi-nen: kari shutsugoku (1967)
  • Choueki juhachi-nen (1967)
  • Bakuchi uchi (1967) - Ozeki Isamu
  • Zenka mono (1968)
  • Kaettekita gokudo (1968) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Ikasama bakuchi (1968)
  • Hibotan bakuto ("Red Peony Gambler") (1968)[7] - Torakichi Kumasaka
  • Jinsei-gekijô: Hishakaku to kiratsune (1968)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Isshuku ippan (1968) - Torakichi Kumazaka
  • Bakuto retsuden (1968) - Adachi Sanji
  • Yôen dokufu-den hannya no ohyaku (1968) - Boss Minokichi of Otowa
  • Otoko no shobu: byakko no tetsu (1968)
  • Kyôdai jingi gyakuen no sakazuki (1968)
  • Heitai gokudo (1968)
  • Ballad of Murder (1968)
  • Gokudo (1968) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Wicked Priest (1968) - Mikuni Shinkai
  • Daigashi (1968)
  • Bakuchi-uchi: Socho tobaku (1968) - Tetsuo Matsuda
  • Nunnery Confidential (1968)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Hanafuda shôbu (1969) - Torakichi Kumasaka
  • Tabi ni deta gokudo (1969) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Quick-draw Okatsu (1969) - Bounty hunter
  • Shokin kasegi (1969) - Ling Fung
  • Hissatsu bakuchi-uchi (1969)
  • Red Peony: The Hanafuda Game (1969)
  • Memoir of Japanese Assassins (1969)
  • Gonin no Shôkin Kasegi (1969) - Ichibei Shikoro
  • Tosei-nin Retsuden (1969) - Kaku
  • Boss (1969)[8] - Sakata Yoshinobu
  • Nihon boryoku-dan: Kumicho (1969) - Miyahara
  • Matteita gokudo (1969) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Gorotsuki butai (1969)
  • Gokudô bôzu: Nenbutsu hitokiri tabi (1969)
  • Gendai yakuza: Yotamono no okite (1969)
  • Chôeki san kyôdai (1969)

1970–1979[edit]

  • Hibotan bakuto: Oryû sanjô (1970) - Torakichi Kumasaka
  • Bakuchi-uchi: Nagaremono (1970) - Yoshii Yusaku
  • Nippon dabi katsukyu (1970)
  • Saigo no tokkôtai (1970)
  • Gokuaku bozu hitokiri kazoe uta (1970) - Shinkai
  • Blind Yakuza Monk (1970) - Dr. Mitamura
  • Thugs of Shinjuku (1970) - Senior yakuza at funeral (uncredited)
  • Shiruku hatto no ô-oyabun: Chobi-hige no kuma (1970)
  • Shiruku hatto no ô-oyabun (1970)
  • Shin Abashiri Bangaichi: Fubuki no Hagure Okami (1970)
  • Sengo hiwa, hoseki ryakudatsu (1970)
  • Nihon boryoku-dan: Kumicho kuzure (1970)
  • Hakurai jingi: Kapone no shatei (1970)
  • Gokudo kyojo tabi (1970) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Gokudo Kamagasaki ni kaeru (1970) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Gokuaku bozu nenbutsu sandangiri (1970) - Shinkai
  • Underground Syndicate (1970)
  • Sympathy for the Underdog (1971) - Yonabaru - Koza downtown boss
  • A Boss with the Samurai Spirit (1971) - Capone
  • Bakuchi-uchi: Inochi-huda (1971) - Kobayashi Kanji
  • Gokuaku bozu - Nomu utsu kau (1971)
  • Nihon yakuza-den: Sôchiyô e no michi (1971) - Torakichi Ohmatsu
  • Hibotan bakuto: Oinochi itadaki masu (1971) - Torakichi Kumasaka
  • Kaoyaku (1971) - Hoshino
  • Nippon akuninden (1971) - Kumai
  • Nihon aku nin den (1971)
  • Kizudarake no seishun (1971) - Mihashi Tetsuo
  • Boryokudan sai buso (1971)
  • Bakuto kirikomi-tai (1971) - Yano
  • Akû oyabûn tai daigashî (1971)
  • Hibotan bakuto: Jingi tooshimasu (1972)
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Sword of Vengeance (1972)[3][9] - Ogami Ittō
  • Kizu darake jinsei furui do de gonzansu (1972)
  • Cherry Blossom Fire Gang (1972) - Master Kofusai Donju
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx (1972)[3][10] - Ogami Ittō
  • Gokudo makari touru (1972) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart to Hades (1972)[3] - Ogami Ittō
  • Kînagashî hyâkunîn (1972)
  • Shôkin kubi: Isshun hachi-nin giri (1972)
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in Peril (1972)[3] - Ogami Ittō
  • Nihon Aku Nin Den: Jigoku No Michizure (1972)
  • Bakuchi-uchi Gaiden (1972)
  • Sakura no Daimon (1973)
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in the Land of Demons (1973)[3] - Ogami Itto
  • Kamagasaki gokudo (1973) - Shimamura Seikichi, movie star
  • Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell (1974)[3][11] - Ogami Itto
  • Gokudo VS Mamushi (1974)
  • Datsugoku Hiroshima satsujinshû (1974) - Okamoto Seijiro
  • New Battles Without Honor and Humanity (1974) - Aoki Naotake
  • ESPY (1974) - Ulrov
  • Gokudo VS furyô banchô (1974) - Shimamura Seikichi
  • Gotô hoka sâtsujin shû (1975)
  • Bôryoku kinmyaku (1975)
  • Yukâi na gokudo (1976)
  • Akuma no temari-uta (1977) - Inspector Isokawa
  • Devil's Bouncing Ball Song (1977) - Tatsuo Honda
  • Sugata Sanshiro (1977) - Murai
  • Torakku yarô: Otoko ippiki momojirô (1977)
  • The Bad News Bears Go to Japan (1978)[9] - Coach Shimizu
  • Hi no Tori ("The Phoenix") (1978) - Sarutahaiko, General of the Yamatai
  • Oh My Son (1979) - Shuzo Kawase
  • Distant Tomorrow (1979) - Iwasa

1980–1989[edit]

  • Chichi yo haha yo! (1980) - Asakawa Senjo
  • Shogun Assassin (1980)[2][3] - Lone Wolf
  • Seishun no mon ("The Gate of Youth") (1981) - Ryugoro Hanawa
  • Flames of Blood (1981) - Seihachi
  • Makai Tenshō ("Samurai Reincarnation") (1981) - Lord Tajima no Kami Munenori Yagyu
  • Moeru yusha (1981) - Goro Kaji
  • The Shootout (1982) - Yabuki
  • Conquest (1982) - Tsuyoshi Gonno
  • Irezumi: Spirit of Tattoo (1982) - Kyogoro / the Tatto Artist
  • Shōsetsu Yoshida gakkō (1983) - Bukichi Miki
  • Hakujasho (1983) - Ekai Kanamishima
  • Jinsei gekijo ("Theater of Life") (1984)
  • Shura no mure (1984)
  • Story of the Yamashita Boy (1985) - Yamashita Taizo, Cho's father
  • A Promise (1986) - Detective Tagami
  • Michi (1986) - Naokichi Sakura
  • Shinran: Shiroi michi ("Shinran: Path to Purity") (1987) - Homen
  • Daireikai: Shindara dou naru (1989)
  • Shaso (1989) - Kazuo Otagaki
  • Black Rain (1989)[3][4] - Sugai
  • Tanba Tetsuro no daireikai shindara dounaru (1989) - God

1990[edit]

  • Jotei: Kasuga no tsubone (1990)
  • Checkmate (1991) - Sanae Mitamura

Television[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Leous, G. (c. 2003): Tomisaburo Wakayama Retrieved on May 23, 2010.
  2. ^ a b c Stout, J. (1981): "Tomisaburo Wakayama: The Anti-Hero of Shogun Assassin." Martial Arts Movies (August), 1(2):26–33.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Asiateca: Tomisaburo Wakayama (August 10, 2007). Retrieved on May 24, 2010.
  4. ^ a b Nash, Jay Robert; Ross, Stanley R. (1990). The Motion Picture Guide 1990 Annual The Films of 1989. Cinebooks. ISBN 978-0-933997-29-5.
  5. ^ Sankei Sports: 若山騎一郎&仁美凌、熱愛発覚!交際5年 (in Japanese) (March 31, 2010). Retrieved on May 24, 2010. Archived April 2, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Cowie, Peter (1977). World Filmography 1967. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press. p. 342. ISBN 978-0-498-01565-6.
  7. ^ Hong Kong Cinema: Red Peony Gambler (c. 2006). Retrieved on May 24, 2010.
  8. ^ Desjardins, Chris (2005). Outlaw Masters of Japanese Film. I B Tauris & Company Limited. p. 8. ISBN 978-1-84511-086-4.
  9. ^ a b Maltin, Leonard (2005). Leonard Maltin's Movie and Video Guide. ISBN 978-0-452-28699-3.
  10. ^ Palmer, Bill (1995). The Encyclopedia of Martial Arts Movies. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-0-8108-3027-1.
  11. ^ Maltin, Leonard (2002). Leonard Maltin's Movie and Video Guide 2003. Plume. ISBN 978-0-452-28329-9.

External links[edit]