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Tomisaburō Wakayama is a Actor and Producer Japonais born on 1 september 1929 at Tokyo City

Tomisaburō Wakayama

Tomisaburō Wakayama
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Birth name Masaru Okumura
Nationality Japon
Birth 1 september 1929 at Tokyo City
Death 2 april 1992 (at 62 years) at Kyoto (Japon)

Tomisaburō Wakayama (若山 富三郎, Wakayama Tomisaburō, September 1, 1929 – April 2, 1992), born Masaru Okumura, 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.


Wakayama was born on September 1, 1929, in Fukagawa, a district in Tokyo, Japan. His father was Tohiji Katsu (or Katsutōji Kineya), a noted kabuki performer and nagauta singer, and the family as a whole were kabuki performers. He and his younger brother, Shintaro Katsu, followed their father in the theater. 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.

In 1952, as part of the Azuma Kabuki troupe, Wakayama toured the United States of America for nine months. He gave up theater performance completely after his two-year term with the troupe was over. Wakayama taught judo until Toho recruited him as a new martial arts star in their jidaigeki movies. He prepared for these movies by practicing other disciplines, including kenpō, iaidō, kendo, and bōjutsu. All this helped him for roles in the television series The Mute Samurai, the 1975 television series Shokin Kasegi (The Bounty Hunter), 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 to 500 films. 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.

Wakayama died of acute heart failure on April 2, 1992, in a hospital in Kyoto. He was survived by a son, Kiichiro Wakayama (born c. 1965), also an actor.

Best films

Black Rain (1989)

Usually with

Kenji Misumi
Kenji Misumi
(5 films)
Yoshi Katō
Yoshi Katō
(3 films)
Source : Wikidata

Filmography of Tomisaburō Wakayama (22 films)

Display filmography as list


Black Rain
Black Rain (1989)
, 2h
Directed by Ridley Scott
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Thriller, Action, Adventure, Crime
Themes Mafia films, Seafaring films, Transport films, Films about automobiles, Motocyclette, Yakuza films, Road movies, Chase films, Gangster films
Actors Michael Douglas, Andy García, Ken Takakura, Kate Capshaw, Yūsaku Matsuda, Tomisaburō Wakayama
Roles Sugai
Rating66% 3.348823.348823.348823.348823.34882
Nick Conklin is a New York City police officer facing possible criminal charges; Internal Affairs believes Nick was involved with his partner who was caught taking criminal money in a corruption scandal. Nick is divorced from his wife, who has custody of their two children. Nick also has financial difficulties.
Samurai Reincarnation, 2h2
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku
Genres Fantasy, Action, Horror
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Sonny Chiba, Kenji Sawada, Tomisaburō Wakayama, Ken Ogata, Hideo Murota, Hiroyuki Sanada
Roles Lord Tajima no Kami Munenori Yagyu
Rating65% 3.2953153.2953153.2953153.2953153.295315
Following the massacre of many thousands of Christians by soldiers of the Tokugawa Empire after the Shimabara Rebellion, Shiro Amakusa renounces the God who he feels abandoned them, and bargains his soul to the forces of darkness for the power to take his revenge. He gains the power to resurrect the dead, and begins with Hosokawa, the wife of a samurai who mocked her for her chastity and then left her to die during the invasion. Shiro restores her beauty in exchange for her loyalty. Next, they travel to the cave of legendary swordsman Miyamoto Musashi, who regrets that he neglected his lovely wife to find more opponents to duel, and that his advanced age prevents him from challenging the one rival he considered worthy to test his technique. He initially resists the pair, but suffers a heart attack and agrees to join them. During this exchange, his cave is visited by Yagyu Jubei, son of a samurai master and a powerful swordsman in his own right. Jubei rushes to Musashi's aid only to find an empty suit of armor. The unholy trio then encounter Inshun, a Buddhist monk who is plagued with terrible fantasies of sex and death. Hosokawa taunts him with the failings of his monastic teachings, and he commits suicide in despair, becoming one of Shiro's undead in the process.
Shogun Assassin, 1h25
Directed by Kenji Misumi, Robert Houston
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Action, Adventure
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Tomisaburō Wakayama, Robert Houston, Kayo Matsuo, Akiji Kobayashi, Taketoshi Naito
Roles Ogami Itto
Rating73% 3.696943.696943.696943.696943.69694
As the opening credits roll, an abbreviated version of Ogami Ittō's (Tomisaburô Wakayama) past as Shogunate Decapitator and his wife's murder by ninja are seen, with Daigorō (Akihiro Tomikawa) providing the narration.
The Bad News Bears Go to Japan, 1h31
Directed by John Berry
Origin USA
Genres Comedy
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Baseball films, Children's films
Actors Tony Curtis, Jackie Earle Haley, Regis Philbin, Tomisaburō Wakayama, Quinn Smith, George Wyner
Roles Coach Shimizu
Rating37% 1.8622251.8622251.8622251.8622251.862225
Small-time promoter/hustler Marvin Lazar (Curtis) sees a potential money-making venture in the Bears that will help him to pay off his debts. After seeing a TV spot about the Bears, he decides to chaperone the baseball team for a trip to Japan in their match against the country's best little league baseball team.
ESPY (1974)
, 1h34
Directed by Jun Fukuda
Genres Science fiction, Thriller, Action, Adventure
Actors Hiroshi Fujioka, Kaoru Yumi, Eiji Okada, Tomisaburō Wakayama, Masao Kusakari, Robert Dunham
Roles Ulrov
Rating57% 2.8944252.8944252.8944252.8944252.894425
The film deals with the recruitment of racecar driver Jiro Miki (Kusakari) and his dog, Cheetah, to a group of people who use ESP, psychokinesis, and other special mental abilities to fight crime. The major villain is Wolf (Wakayama), whose behavior stems as a result of the prejudicial murder of his father over his father's psychic abilities.
Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell, 1h23
Origin Japon
Genres Action
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Tomisaburō Wakayama, Isao Kimura, Gō Katō, Renji Ishibashi
Roles Ogami Itto
Rating73% 3.6949753.6949753.6949753.6949753.694975
The swordsman Ogami Ittō is confronted by a secretive branch of the Yagyū clan that practices black magic, including the ability to burrow through the earth. He encounters Kaori, a female expert with knives. And there's Hyouei, an illegitimate son of Yagyū Retsudo who kills anyone Ittō and Daigoro come into contact with. It culminates in a final battle between Ittō and the combined clan groups under Retsudo on a snow-capped mountain in northern Japan, in which the baby cart becomes a sled. Ittō defeats the entire army, shooting, stabbing, slashing, dismembering, and beheading the entire army. But the one-eyed Retsudo again gets away, vowing to kill Ittō another time.
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in the Land of Demons, 1h29
Directed by Kenji Misumi
Origin Japon
Genres Action
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Tomisaburō Wakayama, Shingo Yamashiro, Michiyo Okusu, Eiji Okada, Taketoshi Naito, Hideji Ōtaki
Roles Ogami Itto
Rating75% 3.794723.794723.794723.794723.79472
Ogami is tested by five messengers, each who try to kill him. After defeating all the messengers, Ogami learns he must kill a young girl who was raised as a boy and is intended to be the heir of a local daimyo, while the real heir, a little boy, is kept locked away. In addition to murdering the senile, old lord, his concubine and the girl, Ogami must stop a document revealing the deception from reaching the hands of his mortal enemy, Yagyū Retsudō. Meanwhile, Ogami Daigoro is again separated from his father and proves his courage and sense of honor as he refuses to admit the guilt of a woman pickpocket he became mixed up with.
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx, 1h21
Directed by Kenji Misumi
Origin Japon
Genres Drama, Action
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Tomisaburō Wakayama, Kayo Matsuo, Akiji Kobayashi
Roles Ogami Itto
Rating79% 3.995313.995313.995313.995313.99531
The disgraced former executioner, or Kogi Kaishakunin to the shogun, Ogami Ittō is now living rough on the land with his three-year-old son Daigoro, travelling the countryside as a hired killer. Pushing his son in a baby cart, he stops at a bathhouse looking for a room and a bath, and is eagerly welcomed in by a young woman. However, the manager of the house sees Ittō as a dirty vagabond and scolds the young woman for letting him in the house. Overhearing this, Ittō goes to the baby cart and retrieves a bundle and hands it to the manager for safe keeping – it is 500 gold pieces, earned from a recent job. The manager's tone quickly changes, but when he tries to wash Daigoro's feet, the boy kicks water at the old man and tromps across the floor, leaving wet footprints.
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in Peril, 1h21
Directed by Buichi Saitō
Origin Japon
Genres Action
Themes Seafaring films, Sports films, Transport films, Martial arts films, Samurai films
Actors Tomisaburō Wakayama, Asao Koike, Sō Yamamura
Roles Ogami Itto
Rating75% 3.7949953.7949953.7949953.7949953.794995
Oyuki, a tattooed female assassin – the renegade member of a daimyo's personal bodyguard detail – is killing every man that is sent up against her. Along with her deadly use of the short blade, she strips to the waist while fighting to reveal elaborate tattoos on her chest and back. On her front is a kintarō grasping her left breast. A portrait of a mountain witch covers her back. She then cuts off her victims' topknots, or chonmage, which brings dishonor to the dead man and his family.