Setsuko Hara  Setsuko Hara (原 節子)
  Date of birth:
  June 17th, 1920
  Yokohama, Japan
  Date of death:
  September 5th, 2015
  Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan
Acting Filmography


Quite possibly the most widely celebrated actress in the history of Japanese cinema, the elegant Setsuko Hara made her screen debut at the age of 15, when she appeared in Don't Hesitate, Young Folks, a 1935 film produced by Nikkatsu. Her relatively brief career spanned close to three decades, during which time she made more than seventy feature-length pictures including household dramas, wartime propaganda pieces, historical epics, and the occasional adaptation of a famous piece of literature.

Although she is primarily remembered for the quiet dramas she made under the care of Yasujiro Ozu, Hara also collaborated with other renowned directors such as Akira Kurosawa, Mikio Naruse, and Hiroshi Inagaki. Her final film appearance was in Inagaki's Chushingura (1962), a 3.5-hour epic about the 47 Ronin. (Interestingly enough, this was her second encounter with this particular story, as she'd previously acted in a two-part 1939 adaptation directed by Kajiro Yamamoto.)

After the release of Chushingura, the 42-year-old actress abruptly announced retirement, confessing to her fans—and the president of Toho—that she'd never really enjoyed being an actress and that it was time for her to move on. She retired, unmarried and childless, to the city of Kamakura, where she lived out the rest of her life in relative seclusion. Setsuko Hara passed away at the age of 95, leaving behind a brief but brilliant legacy and the omnipresent question of what would've happened had she continued to act just a little bit longer…

Acting Toho Filmography

Date      Title ROLE Type
1937 The Woman Aiming for the Shogun   Produced
1942 The War at Sea from Hawaii to Malaya Giichi's Older Sister Produced
1946 No Regrets for Our Youth Yukie Yagihara Produced
1949 Blue Mountains Yukiko Shimazaki Produced
1952 Golden Girl   Produced
1954 Sound of the Mountain Kikuko Ogata Produced
1956 An Older Brother and His Younger Sister Akiko Produced
1956 Sudden Rain Fumiko Namiki Produced
1958 Oban: Final Chapter   Produced
1959 The Three Treasures Amaterasu, Sun Goddess Produced
1960 Daughters, Wives, and a Mother Sanae Soga Produced
1961 A Person of Longing   Produced
1961 The End of Summer Akiko, Daughter-in-Law Produced
1962 Chushingura Riku Oishi Produced