Japanese Actor Tetsuya Watari Dies at 78

Society Culture

Tokyo, Aug. 14 (Jiji Press)--Japanese actor Tetsuya Watari, who appeared in hit drama series "Seibu Keisatsu" (Western Police), died of pneumonia at a Tokyo hospital Monday. He was 78.

Watari, whose real name was Michihiko Watase, joined Japanese movie studio Nikkatsu Corp. in 1964 as a university student and later made his film debut in "Abare Kishido."

He rose to stardom as an action actor, joining the ranks of Yujiro Ishihara and Akira Kobayashi.

Watari performed in many films and television dramas, including "Tokyo Nagaremono" (Tokyo Drifter) in 1966 and "Jingi no Hakaba" (Graveyard of Honor) in 1975.

Out of his admiration for Ishihara, Watari moved to Ishihara International Productions Inc. in 1971, even though the talent agency and film production company established by Ishihara was struggling at that time.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press