Mako

Biography

Date of Birth 10 December 1933, Kobe, Japan Date of Death 21 July 2006, Somis, California, USA (esophageal cancer) Birth Name Makoto Iwamatsu Height 5' 4" (1.63 m) Mini Biography Born in Japan, Mako was living there with his grandparents while his parents studied art in the United States, when Japan and the U.S. went to war in 1941. His parents remained in the U.S., working for the Office of War Information, and, at the cessation of the conflict, were granted U.S. residency by Congress. Mako joined his parents in New York and studied architecture. He entered the U.S. Army in the early 1950s and acted in shows for military personnel, discovering a talent and love for the theatre. He abandoned his plans to become an architect and instead enrolled at the famed Pasadena Community Playhouse in California. Following his studies there, he appeared in many stage productions and on television. In 1966, he won an Academy Award nomination as Best Supporting Actor for his first film role, as the coolie Po-Han in El Yang-Tsé en llamas (1966). Only occasionally since have his roles reached the level of his talents, but he has worked steadily in feature films ever since. He appeared on Broadway in the leading role in Stephen Sondheim's "Pacific Overtures" and he co-founded and served as artistic director for the highly-acclaimed East-West Players theatre company in Los Angeles. After a long battle and illness from cancer, he passed away on the twenty first of July in 2006, at the age of 72. He was survived by his wife, Shizuko Hoshi, who co-starred in episodes of "M.A.S.H." (1972), as well, and his children and grand-children. Spouse Shizuko Hoshi (? - 21 July 2006) (his death) 2 children Trade Mark Raspy, thick-accented voice. Trivia Became a naturalized citizen in 1956. Frequently cast by Chuck Norris. Children: daughters Sala and Mimosa. Was nominated for Broadway's 1976 Tony Award as Best Actor (Musical) for "Pacific Overtures." Artistic Director Emeritus of the nation's premier Asian American theatre organization, East West Players, located in the "Little Tokyo" area of Los Angeles, California, USA. Passed away one day after being officially announced as the voice of "Master Splinter" in TMNT - Tortugas ninja jóvenes mutantes (2007). In the months before his death, he was preparing to appear with his wife in an East West production of the comedy "Motty Chon." Instead of recasting the part, the company, out of respect, canceled the production. Pioneer of Asian American theater in Los Angeles. Wife Shizuko Hoshi is a dancer, choreographer and actress. He was the East West Players' first artistic director in 1965. He also taught acting classes there to help pay the company's bills. The company's first home was a basement in a Silver Lake church secured by co-founder Beulah Quo. Later, it moved to a storefront on Santa Monica Blvd. Since 1998, it has been housed in the historic Union Center for the Arts and performs in a 240 seat theater. Member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Actors Branch). Received a special tribute as part of the Annual Memorial tribute at The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007) (TV). One of six Asian actors nominated for an Academy Award in an acting category. The others are Haing S. Ngor who won Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Los gritos del silencio (1984), Miyoshi Umeki who won for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Sayonara (1957), Sessue Hayakawa nominated for El puente sobre el río Kwai (1957), Ken Watanabe nominated for El último samurai (2003), and Rinko Kikuchi nominated for Babel (2006). One of nine actors of Asian descent nominated for an Academy Award in an acting category. The others are Miyoshi Umeki who won Best Supporting Actress nominated for Sayonara (1957), Sessue Hayakawa nominated for El puente sobre el río Kwai (1957), Jocelyne LaGarde nominated for Hawaii (1966), Ben Kingsley who won Best Actor for Gandhi (1982), Haing S. Ngor who won Best Supporting Actor for Los gritos del silencio (1984), Pat Morita nominated for Karate kid, el momento de la verdad (1984), Ken Watanabe nominated for El último samurai (2003) and Rinko Kikuchi nominated for Babel (2006). His father Atsushi Iwamatsu who went by the pen name Taro Yashima, wrote the famous children's books Crow Boy and Umbrella.

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Person Photo

Birth Name

Mako Iwamatsu

Birth Place

Higashinada-ku, Kobe, Prefectura de Hyogo, Japón

Birth Date

12/10/1933

Death Date

7/21/2006
Known For
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Seven Years In Tibet

Kungo Tsarong

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Highlander: The Final Dimension

Nakano

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Pacific Heights

Toshio Watanabe

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Battle Creek Brawl

Herbert

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The Perfect Weapon

Kim

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Island At The Top Of The World

Oomiak

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Sidekicks

Mr. Lee

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Red Sun Rising

Buntoro Iga

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The Bird People In China

Shen

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Kung Fu: The Movie

The Manchu

Starring In
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Fairy Tail: Dragon Cry

Young Natsu

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Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova DC

Maya (voice)

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The Magnet City

Self

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K-On! The Movie

Classmate (voice)

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Rise: Blood Hunter

Poe

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TMNT

Splinter (voice)

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TMNT: Voice Talent First Look

Splinter (voice) (archive footage) (uncredited)

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Memoirs of a Geisha

Sakamoto

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Bulletproof Monk

Mr. Kojima

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Cruel Game

Straw Hat

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Pearl Harbor

Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto

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Samurai Jack: The Premiere Movie

Aku (voice) (archive footage)

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Bruce Lee: A Warrior's Journey

(archive footage)

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Rugrats in Paris: The Movie

Mr. Yamaguchi (voice)

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Alegría

Old Momo

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The Bird People In China

Shen

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Seven Years In Tibet

Kungo Tsarong

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Riot

Mr. Lee (segment "Gold Mountain")

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Female Justice

Mr. Young

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Balance of Power

Todo Matsumoto

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Crying Freeman

Shudo Shimazaki

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Midnight Man

Buun Som

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Highlander: The Final Dimension

Nakano

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Red Sun Rising

Buntoro Iga

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A Dangerous Place

Sensei

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RoboCop 3

Kanemitsu

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Rising Sun

Yoshida-san

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Sidekicks

Mr. Lee

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My Samurai

Mr. Tszing

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The Perfect Weapon

Kim

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Pacific Heights

Toshio Watanabe

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Taking Care Of Business

Mr. Sakamoto

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Hiroshima: Out of the Ashes

Sgt. Moritaki

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Enemy: Fatal Mission

Trang

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Tucker: The Man and His Dream

Jimmy

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Silent Assassins

Oyama

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The Wash

Nobu Matsumoto

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P.O.W. the Escape

Capt. Vinh

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Kung Fu: The Movie

The Manchu

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Armed Response

Akira Tanaka

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Conan the Destroyer

Akiro 'The Wizard'

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Testament

Mike

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The Last Ninja

Aitaro Sakura

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Conan the Barbarian

The Wizard / Narrator

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An Eye for an Eye

James Chan

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The Bushido Blade

Enjiro

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Geheimauftrag Hollywood

Nakomuri

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Battle Creek Brawl

Herbert

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The Killer Elite

Yuen Chung

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The Green Hornet

Low Sing (archive footage)

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Island At The Top Of The World

Oomiak

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Silence

Kichijiro (as Mako Iwamatsu)

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Fools

Psychiatrist

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The Hawaiians

Mun Ki

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The Challenge

Yuro

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The Great Bank Robbery

L'agent secret Fong

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The Private Navy of Sgt. O'Farrell

Calvin Coolidge Ishimura

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The Sand Pebbles

Po-han

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The Ugly Dachshund

Kenji

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McHale's Navy Joins the Air Force

Japanese Submarine Captain (uncredited)

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Never So Few

Soldier in Hospital (uncredited)

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