Kenji Sahara  Kenji Sahara (佐原 健二)
  Actor
  Date of birth:
  May 14th, 1932
  Kanagawa, Japan
   
   
   
Acting Filmography

Biography

Born with the name Masayoshi Kato, Kenji Sahara has had a long film career. He is best known for his work in Toho's science fiction productions. The actor is one of the few actors to have appeared in the Showa, Heisei and Millennium series of the Godzilla franchise.

Sahara first got his break in the business back in 1953 at age 21. This break came with placing second in the "Mr. Ordinary Contest", with first place going to future Nikkatsu star Ryoji Hayama. Seeing talent, Toho immediately placed Sahara in the "Toho Acting Institute". Following his graduation, Toho signed the actor to an exclusive contract. The very next year he started appearing in productions. These included small parts in Farewell Rabaul (1954) and Godzilla (1954). At this time, he was using the stage name of "Tadashi Ishihara".

In 1956, Sahara's career really launched. Changing his stage name to "Kenji Sahara", the actor landed the lead role in the high profile film Rodan (1956). This followed with another leading real the next year in The Mysterians (1957). These performances cemented Sahara as the go-to choice to play the "salary man" role in Toho's early science fiction productions.

In 1963, Sahara would break out of his type casting and start to play villanious roles as well. This includes a great transformation as the seedy Senzo Koyama in Matango (1963) and as an invading race in Atragon (1963). The following year, while working on the joint production None But the Brave (1965), Sahara developed a solid relationship with special effects director Eiji Tsuburaya while filming on location in Hawaii. This paved way to the actor taking the staring role in Tsuburaya's Ultra Q TV series, which lead the way for Ultraman.

It's no shock that Sahara had developed a reputation for his science fiction work, and continued to be cast in the special effects productions of Toho. The nature of his screen presence though had drifted to supporting. After a long career at Toho, Sahara left the company in 1976 to do work for other studios. This ended up being temporary, as when Toho relaunched the Godzilla series they picked on Sahara to have small roles in films like Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991) and Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla (1994).


Acting Toho Filmography

Date      Title ROLE Type
1954 Farewell Rabaul Pilot Produced
1954 Godzilla Man Aboard Ship Produced
1956 Rodan Shigeru Kamura Produced
1957 The Mysterians Joji Atsumi Produced
1958 H-Man Masada, Doctor Produced
1958 Big Hit Tanuki Palace   Produced
1961 Mothra Helicoptor Pilot Produced
1962 King Kong vs. Godzilla Kazuo Fujita Produced
1962 Gorath Saiki, First Officer Produced
1962 Chushingura Asano Samurai Produced
1963 Matango Senzo Koyama Produced
1963 Atragon Uoto Unno, Undercover Mu Agent Produced
1964 Mothra vs. Godzilla Banzo Torahata, Owner of Happy Enterprises Produced
1964 Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster Kanamaki, Editor in Chief Produced
1965 Frankenstein vs. Baragon Soldier Produced
1965 None But the Brave Fujimoto, Corporal Produced
1966 The War of the Gargantuas Yuzo Majida, Doctor Produced
1967 Son of Godzilla Morio, Observer Produced
1968 Destroy All Monsters Nishikawa, Moon Base Commander Produced
1968 Admiral Yamamoto First Officer of Information Section Produced
1969 All Monsters Attack Kenkichi Miki, Ichiro's Father Produced
1969 Battle of the Japan Sea Submarine Chief Produced
1970 Space Amoeba Makoto Obata Produced
1970 The Militarists Naval Officer Produced
1971 Battle of Okinawa   Produced
1973 The Human Revolution   Produced
1974 Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla Sunflower Ship's Captain Produced
1974 Tomorrow Never Waits Matsumoto Distributed
1975 Terror of Mechagodzilla Segawa, Defense Corps Commander Produced
1975 Conflagration Kagoshima, Reporter Produced
1975 Blue Mountains Union Official Produced
1991 Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah Takayuki Segawa, Minister Produced
1993 Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II Takayuki Segawa, Minister Produced
1994 Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla Takayuki Segawa, Minister Produced
2004 Godzilla: Final Wars Hachiro Jinguji, Paleontologist Produced