|Tatsuyoshi Ehara in June 2016. Photo by Brett Homenick.|
Prolific Toho actor Tatsuyoshi Ehara passed away on May 1 at 11:26 a.m. at his home in Nagano Prefecture. He was 84.
Ehara-san was born on March 26, 1937, in Tokyo. He began acting in the late 1940s as a child actor and continued acting well into adulthood, appearing in about 120 films. At Toho, he regularly appeared in the long-running Young Guy series, alongside star Yuzo Kayama, as Eguchi, the friend of the titular character. He was often cast by director Kihachi Okamaoto in numerous movies, including: Desperado Outpost (1959), Samurai Assassin (1965), Japan's Longest Day (1967), and Epoch of Murder Madness (1967).
Internationally, his best known credits are the Akira Kurosawa films Sanjuro (1962) as the samurai Sekiguchi, and Red Beard (1965) as Genzo Tsugawa. He also guest-starred in episode 1 of Ultra Q (1966) as the reporter Nitta. He quit acting in the 1970s and pursued business, as well as writing and journalism. (His autobiography, Memories from the Heart, was released earlier this year.)
|With Tatsuyoshi Ehara in June 2016.|
I was privileged to interview Ehara-san (part one and part two of the interview) and visit him several times between 2014 and 2017. Over the years, however, when his health began declining, I wasn't able to see him anymore. I always enjoyed his company.
A private funeral was already held by his widow, Yoko. Rest in peace, Ehara-san.