Meiko Kaji  Meiko Kaji (梶 芽衣子)
  Actress
  Date of birth:
  March 24th, 1947
  Tokyo, Japan
   
   
   
Acting Filmography

Biography

Best known in the West for slashing her way through Toshiya Fujita's period revenge flick and Kazuo Koike manga adaptation Lady Snowblood (1973) and it's sequel Lady Snowblood: Love Song of Vengeance (1974) and possessing a unique beauty and grace that has garnered her numerous fans in both the East and West, Meiko Kaji has had a very illustrious film career despite the hyper violence and sexual content of many of the films she's appeared in.

Born Masako Ota in 1947, Meiko Kaji joined Nikkatsu Studios while still in her teens, appearing in many films for the company before appearing in such films as two episode of the Stray Cat Rock series and Teruo Ishii's Blind Woman's Curse, both of which would garner her some fame. After Nikkatsu switched almost exclusively to making roman porno and pinku eiga flicks, Kaji did not want to become a star of pornographic films and thus left the studio before appearing in such films for Toei Studios as the Ginjo series and the Female Convict Scorpion films (the second of which in particular, Jailhouse 41, is now something of a cult classic), in which she appears as Nami Matsushima, nickname Sasori (Scorpion), a tough as nails, silent and unblinking beauty in brutal captivity after being betrayed by her boyfriend. 1973 in particular was big year for Meiko Kaji, aside from appearing in the last two Female Convict Scorpion films, she also appeared in Lady Snowblood for Tokyo Eiga in what would end up being her most famous role, where she plays Yuki, a young woman out to avenge her's parents' deaths by hunting down and killing the four surviving monsters responsible. It is now quite the cult classic thanks to Quentin Tarantino's use of not only the song Flower of Carnage but also several plot elements for his epic grindhouse tribute Kill Bill. That same year, she also appeared in the second installment of Kinji Fukasaku's famous Battles Without Honor and Humanity series, Deadly Fight in Hiroshima.

After appearing in a few of director Yasuzo Masumura's later works, she put her career somewhat on a hiatus, though to this day she still stars in the occasional role, mainly for television. Recently none other than Quentin Tarantino himself has expressed strong interest in casting her in one of his future films.


Acting Toho Filmography

Date      Title ROLE Type
1973 Lady Snowblood Yuki Shurayuki, Lady Snowblood Distributed
1974 Lady Snowblood: Love Song of Vengeance Yuki Shurayuki, Lady Snowblood Distributed
1974 Yadonashi   Distributed
1975 Domyaku Retto Fumiko Distributed
1976 Between Women and Wives Eiko Maeda Produced