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Actor Ken Watanabe: Filmography, biography, personal life

Fearless samurai, a brave general, a brilliant prince - whom no one portrayed for his life, Ken Watanabe. A talented actor from Japan managed to overcome a serious illness and achieve world popularity. By the age of 56, he had played over 50 roles, appearing not only in Japanese, but also in foreign film projects. What was the creative path of the famous "samurai", what can you tell about his personal life?

Ken Watanabe: childhood

The famous Japanese man was born in a small town of Koide, a joyful event happened in 1959. Ken Watanabe does not come from a cinematic dynasty, his father worked as a calligrapher, his mother was a teacher. Childhood he remembered as a series of endless moves, constantly arranged by parents. Also, he and his brother, at the insistence of the pope from an early age, practiced sports, practicing running in the summer and skiing in the winter.

Interestingly, as a teenager, Ken did not indulge in dreams of an acting career. His only passion in those years was music, in particular the young Watanabe liked to play the trumpet. The boy not only participated in the school musical circle, but also organized concerts from time to time. It is possible that Ken Watanabe would never have become a star of the cinema, if fate had not intervened. His intention to be among the students of one of the conservatories of Tokyo was prevented by his father's serious illness.

The elder Watanab could not return to his official duties. As a result of his dismissal from work, the family was unable to pay for the training of the future "samurai".

First successes

Despite serious financial difficulties, Ken Watanabe nevertheless carried out his intention to move to Tokyo. In search of a way to make a living, he came to the idea of becoming an actor. Strangely enough, a young man without special education was gladly taken to one of the local theaters, most likely, the leadership impressed his talent. Then followed the participation in the productions, then episodic roles in several serials that did not bring the young man popularity.

"Children of General MacArthur" - the first picture, through which Japanese viewers learned about the existence of such an actor as Ken Watanabe. The filmography of the Japanese began with a drama in which he got the role of a samurai. In the family, the young man had no brave warriors, but he embodied the image of his noble hero on the screen easily and naturally. Japanese filmmakers, impressed by what they saw, began to offer the ascending star the endless roles of samurai, from which Watanabe did not refuse. No wonder, Ken's acquaintances say that in his hands even a banal kitchen knife looks like a dangerous sword.

Disease and recovery

The life path passed by the Japanese can not be called simple. In 1990, he learned that he was seriously ill when doctors detected acute myeloid leukemia. Despite the course of chemotherapy, Ken did not refuse to shoot the action movie "Heaven and Earth," in which he played one of the main roles. Watanabe coped with the relapse that occurred in 1991.

The Japanese actor still had to take a short pause in the work, the time he spent freeing up to restore his own health. The return was triumphant, a lot of bright roles were played. For example, the Japan Academy of Fine Arts noted with an honorable award its role in the drama "Memories of Tomorrow," in which the actor played a wealthy businessman, suddenly stricken with Alzheimer's disease.

The best roles

Among the best works of the Japanese in the big cinema one can not help but mention the painting "The Last Samurai", in which Ken Watanabe brilliantly showed himself in 2003. Films, in which he was shot in the future, also proved successful, but it was the adaptation of the work of John Logan that gave him worldwide fame. Interestingly, his colleague on the set was Tom Cruise. Ken played the rebel samurai Katsumoto, who lived at the end of the 19th century and was at odds with the Cruz character.

"Memoirs of a Geisha" - a picture that allowed Watanabe to claim to be a talented dramatic actor. He got the image of a beloved beautiful Geisha Sayyury, whose complicated story is revealed in this film project. The audience will see everything in this drama: the conflict of love and duty, the charm of secret love, the boiling passions, the rivalry of the fair sex.

It's worth watching the drama "Letters from Iwo Jima", in which the Japanese got the role of a strong-willed general, the famous action film "Batman: The Beginning", where he also played.

A family

Of course, not only the roles in the movie interest viewers who like Ken Watanabe. The personal life of the talented Japanese actor finally settled in 2007, when he married a charming actress Kaho Minami.

His first wife, with whom he broke up in 2005 for unknown reasons, was a woman named Yumiko, who gave birth to the famous "samurai" son and daughter. With children who have already grown up, the actor has excellent relationships, they are often seen.

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