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Popular Film Actors from Japan

Updated June 14, 2019 47.3k views3.8k items

List of famous film actors and actresses from Japan, listed by their popularity with photos when available. Japan has given birth to some great movie actors and actresses over the years, many of who have gone on to star in comedies, dramas, horror movies and more. These are some of the best Japanese screen actors in the history of the world, so if you're a native of Japan and an aspiring actor/actress then these are people you should look up to.

List features Hisako Ôkata, Ineko Arima and more film actors.

This list answers the questions, "Who are the best Japanese actors?" and "Which movies stars are from Japan?"

You can click on the names of these legendary movie stars of Japan in order to get more information about each one. If you're a film buff use this list of talented Japanese film actors to find some new movies you haven't already seen.
  • Megumi Hayashibara1

    Megumi Hayashibara

    Castle in the Sky, The End of Evangelion

    BirthplaceKita, Tokyo, Japan



    Megumi Hayashibara (林原 めぐみ, Hayashibara Megumi, born March 30, 1967) is a Japanese voice... more on Wikipedia
  • 2

    Shincho Kokontei III

    Pom Poko

    BirthplaceJapan, Bunkyō


    ParentsRin Shimizu, Shinshō Kokontei

    Kokondei Shinchou was an actor.
  • Liv Ullmann3

    Liv Ullmann

    A Bridge Too Far, Persona

    BirthplaceTokyo, Japan

    NationalityJapan, Norway


    ParentsJanna Ullmann, Viggo Ullmann

    ChildrenLinn Ullmann

    Liv Johanne Ullmann (born 16 December 1938) is a Norwegian actress and film director. She was... more on Wikipedia
  • Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa4

    Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

    Planet of the Apes, Pearl Harbor

    BirthplaceJapan, Azabu, Tokyo

    NationalityUnited States of America, Japan

    ChildrenCalen Tagawa, Brynne Tagawa

    Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (JP: 田川 洋行 Tagawa Hiroyuki, RU: Пантелеймон Тагава Panteleymon Tagawa;... more on Wikipedia
  • Moon Sung-keun5

    Moon Sung-keun

    Virgin Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Green Fish

    BirthplaceJapan, Tokyo

    NationalitySouth Korea, Japan

    ParentsMoon Ik-hwan

    Moon Sung-keun (born May 28, 1953) is a South Korean actor and politician. He has won three... more on Wikipedia
  • 6

    Misako Uno

    The Grudge 2

    BirthplaceJapan, Edogawa, Tokyo



    Misako Uno is a Japanese actress, talent agent, fashion designer, essayist. She also works... more on Wikipedia
  • Takeshi Kitano7

    Takeshi Kitano

    Battle Royale, Fireworks

    BirthplaceAdachi, Japan



    ParentsSaki Kitano, Kikujiro Kitano

    ChildrenShoko Kitano, Atsushi Kitano

    Takeshi Kitano (北野 武, Kitano Takeshi, born 18 January 1947) is a Japanese comedian, television... more on Wikipedia
  • Masako Nozawa8

    Masako Nozawa

    Dragon Ball Z: Dead Zone, Dragon Ball Z: Bojack Unbound

    BirthplaceJapan, Arakawa, Tokyo



    ParentsRyoshu Nozawa

    Masako Nozawa (野沢 雅子, Nozawa Masako, born October 25, 1936) is a Japanese actress and voice... more on Wikipedia
  • Chishu Ryu9

    Chishu Ryu

    Tokyo Story, Red Beard

    BirthplaceJapan, Tamana


    Chishū Ryū (笠 智衆, Ryū Chishū, May 13, 1904 – March 16, 1993) was a Japanese actor who, in a... more on Wikipedia
  • 10

    Masaharu Satō

    Dragon Ball Z: The Tree of Might, Dragon Ball Z: Cooler's Revenge

    BirthplaceJapan, Ōta, Tokyo


    Masaharu Satō (佐藤 正治, Satō Masaharu, born July 1, 1946) is a Japanese voice actor and narrator... more on Wikipedia
  • Haruma Miura11

    Haruma Miura

    Crows ZERO 2, Kimi ni Todoke

    BirthplaceTsuchiura, Japan



    Haruma Miura (三浦 春馬, Miura Haruma) (born April 5, 1990) is a Japanese actor and singer signed... more on Wikipedia
  • 12

    BirthplaceLos Angeles, California, United States of America

    NationalitySouth Korea, United States of America, Japan

    Stephanie Nonoshita Topalian (Armenian: Ստեֆանի Թոփալյան; Western Armenian: Սթեֆանի Թօփալեան;... more on Wikipedia
  • Mayumi Tanaka13

    Mayumi Tanaka

    Castle in the Sky, Dragon Ball Z: Dead Zone

    BirthplaceTokyo, Japan



    Mayumi Tanaka (田中 真弓, Tanaka Mayumi, born Abe (阿部), born January 15, 1955) is a Japanese... more on Wikipedia
  • Toshiyuki Morikawa14

    Toshiyuki Morikawa

    Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Appleseed

    BirthplaceShinagawa, Japan


    Toshiyuki Morikawa (森川 智之, Morikawa Toshiyuki, born January 26, 1967) is a Japanese voice... more on Wikipedia
  • 15

    Masami Kikuchi

    Otaku no Video, Fatal Fury 2: The New Battle

    BirthplaceChino, Japan



    Masami Kikuchi (菊池 正美, Kikuchi Masami, born April 24, 1960 in Nagano) is a Japanese voice... more on Wikipedia
  • 16

    Yuji Oda

    Graduation Journey: I Came from Japan, Bayside Shakedown: The Movie

    BirthplaceJapan, Miyamae-ku, Kawasaki



    Yūji Oda is a Japanese actor and singer. He is one of Japan's 11 most popular male... more on Wikipedia
  • Mako Iwamatsu17

    Mako Iwamatsu

    Pearl Harbor, Conan the Barbarian

    BirthplaceJapan, Kobe, Keihanshin

    NationalityUnited States of America, Japan


    ParentsMitsu Yashima, Taro Yashima

    ChildrenMimosa Iwamatsu, Sala Iwamatsu

    Makoto Iwamatsu (岩松誠, Iwamatsu Makoto, December 10, 1933 – July 21, 2006) was a Japanese... more on Wikipedia
  • 18

    Renji Ishibashi

    Audition, Tetsuo: The Iron Man

    BirthplaceShinagawa, Japan



    Renji Ishibashi (石橋 蓮司, Ishibashi Renji), born Renji Ishida (石田 蓮司, Ishida Renji, born August... more on Wikipedia
  • Eimei Esumi19

    Eimei Esumi

    A Woman Called Sada Abe, Tokyo Drifter

    BirthplaceShimane, Japan


    Hideaki Esumi was an actor.
  • Yoshio Harada20

    Yoshio Harada

    Nightmare Detective, Still Walking

    BirthplaceAdachi, Japan



    ChildrenKenta Harada, Mayu Harada

    Yoshio Harada (原田 芳雄, Harada Yoshio, 29 February 1940 – 19 July 2011) was a Japanese actor... more on Wikipedia
  • Makoto Raiku21

    Makoto Raiku

    Konjiki no Gash Bell!! Movie 1: Unlisted Demon 101

    BirthplaceGifu, Japan


    Makoto Raiku (雷句誠, Raiku Makoto, born 23 August 1974 in Gifu, Japan) is a manga artist whose... more on Wikipedia
  • Naoto Takenaka22

    Naoto Takenaka

    Sword of the Stranger, The Happiness of the Katakuris




    Naoto Takenaka (竹中 直人, Takenaka Naoto, born March 20, 1956) is a Japanese actor, comedian,... more on Wikipedia
  • Hiroyuki Sanada23

    Hiroyuki Sanada

    The Wolverine, Rush Hour

    BirthplaceShinagawa, Japan



    Hiroyuki Sanada, MBE (真田 広之, Sanada Hiroyuki, born Hiroyuki Shimosawa (下澤 廣之, Shimosawa... more on Wikipedia
  • Tadanobu Asano24

    Tadanobu Asano

    Thor, Thor: The Dark World

    BirthplaceYokohama, Kantō region, East Asia, Honshu, Asia



    ParentsJunko Sato, Yukihisa Sato

    ChildrenHimi Sato, Sumire Sato

    Tadanobu Satō (佐藤 忠信, Satō Tadanobu, born November 27, 1973), better known by his stage name... more on Wikipedia
  • Kenji Kodama25

    Kenji Kodama


    BirthplaceHokkaido, Japan


    Kenji Kodama (こだま 兼嗣, Kodama Kenji, December 13, 1949) is a Japanese anime director, and... more on Wikipedia