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Ryoko Hirosue: Award Winning Japanese Movie Actress and Singer From Yokohama

Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

A first look at actress Ryoko Hirosue


Why is Ryoko Hirosue famous?

Ryoko Hirosue is a Japanese actress and singer. She was born on July 18, 1980 in Yokohama but she grew up in Kochi City. Born just days before Harumi Nemoto, Ryoko has become popular not only in Japan but overseas as well. She is known in Western countries for her appearance in the movie Wasabi and the Academy-award winning movie called Departures.

Ryoko Hirosue joins some famous actresses in a special category

She is not the only Japanese celebrity to achieve success in the United States and other Western nations. Ryoko Yonekura really got more famous for her role in the musical Chicago. And of course, Japanese actress Saki Aibu studied English in California from April to October 2013. She is not as beautiful as Ryoko Yonekura, Aya Ueto, or Fumi Nikaido, but this Ryoko has had lots of acting success.

Ryoko Hirosue's early career and big breakthrough

Ryoko joined the P & G cosmetic model competition when she was 14 years old. It would be in 1995 that she would make her TV debut in Heart ni S. Two years later in 1997, she appeared in the final episode of a medical drama called Hoshi no Kinka and a special episode in Odoru Daisousasen. But Ryoko’s breakthrough as an actress came in a comedy series called Beach Boys. At the 14th Television Drama Academy Awards, she would win a Best Supporting Actress Award for that performance. Beach Boys first aired in 1996. In 1997, Ryoko made her film debut in 20th Century Nostalgia. For this role, she was awarded at three separate award ceremonies including the newcomer of the Year Award at the 21st annual Japanese Academy Awards. Atsuko Maeda and Yuko Oshima would later be awarded for their acting at this same ceremony. In 1999, she starred in the movies Poppoya and Himitsu. She was once again noticed as a star and thus was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for Poppoya at the 23rd Japanese Academy Awards. She would also be nominated or her role in Himitsu for Best Actress. In 2000, Ryoko starred as Yuki Katase in the drama series Summer Snow. This drama became a huge success, winning five awards.

Ryoko Hirosue dressed in an overcoat


International film debut and further success

It was in 2001 that she made her international film debut in Wasabi. She did not know how to speak French so she had to learn her lines phonetically. In 2002, she appeared in Renai Shashin and in 2003, she appeared in a TV drama Ai Nante Irane Yo Natsu which received low ratings. However, this did not deter Hirosue who would be awarded for her role in the romance series called Moto Kare in 2003. She would get a Best Supporting Actress Award at the 38th Television Drama Academy Awards.

The song called "Snow Letter"

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Ryoko Hirosue: First Marriage, Her Academy Award in the Movie Departures & Playing the Role of a Love Doctor

In 2004, Hirosue married male model Takahiro Okazawa in January. On April 10, 2004, she gave birth to a son. However, the couple would divorce in March 2008. In 2007, she would star with the famous actor Hiroshi Abe in Bubble Fiction: Boom or Bust. Hiroshi Abe is the same actor that would star with Aya Ueto in the Thermae Romae films. Abe is so popular that Aya Ueto loved him, having a love for his body! In 2008, Ryoko would appear in the comedy series called Yasuko to Kenji and this is one of the other roles that she is best known for. The 2008 movie Departures would win an award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 81st Academy Awards. She played the role of Mika Kobayashi. In 2010, she would star in the movie Flowers with another famous actress Yukie Nakama. In 2013, she starred in the drama series called Starman: Kono Hoshi no Koi. One of her co-stars in that movie is supermodel Eiko Koike! Hirosue starred as a love doctor in the 2018 feature film called “Love X Doc.” One of her patients in this feature film is a woman who is diagnosed with having overactive hormones.

Ryoko Hirosue at the 20th Japan Best Jewelry Wearer Awards in 2009

Actress Ryoko Hirosue posing for pictures at the 20th Japan Best Jewelry Wearer Award back in 2009.

Actress Ryoko Hirosue posing for pictures at the 20th Japan Best Jewelry Wearer Award back in 2009.


The song called Arigato

Ryoko Hirosue: her second marriage and singing career

Ryoko Hirosue attended Waseda University but she did not finish her education. In 2010, she married Jun Izutsu who is a candle artist. Ryoko’s cousin Kazuya Mimura is a former member of the House of Representatives in Japan. Ryoko Hirosue really has made a name for herself in the movie industry and at 40 years of age, she has a long career ahead of her. Ryoko has released two albums as a singer. They are Arigato! In 1997 and Private in 1999.

As of December 4, 2020, Hirosue has a brand new song to her credit. That song is called “Kimi no Egao” and it was written by Mariya Takeuchi and released digitally. The song was written for the purpose of Hirosue to sing it on NHK’s “Minna no Uta.” This is not the first time that Hirosue and Takeuchi have worked together. About 23 years ago, Takeuchi composed Hirosue’s debut song called “Maji de Koi Suru 5-byo mae.”

The song called "Ashita e"

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