Yoko Tsukasa

Actress Yōko Tsukasa

Yōko Tsukasa (司葉子 Tsukasa Yōko, Tottori Prefecture, August 20, 1934 -)[1] is a Japanese actress. Her long and diverse career includes dramatic and comedic roles. She has worked with Japan's top directors of her time, including Yasujirō Ozu, Akira Kurosawa Kon Ichikawa, Mikio Naruse and Masaki Kobayashi. In 1967 she won the Best Actress award at the Blue Ribbon Awards, the Kinema Junpo Awards, and the Mainichi Film Concours.


Yōko Tsukasa was born Yōko Shōji (庄司葉子 Shōji Yōko) in the city of Sakai-minato in Tottori Prefecture on August 20, 1934.[1] She graduated from Kyoritsu Women's Junior College in 1954 with a major in Home Economics.[2] After graduation she took a job at Shin-Nihon Broadcast Company in Osaka, where she worked as a secretary while also pursuing a career in modeling.[2] Her association with Tōhō began in 1953, and she remained affiliated with this studio throughout her career.[3] Her screen debut was in Tōhō's Forever be Mine (1954), and she became the studio's most popular dramatic actress of the late 1950s. Her skill in portraying delicate, sympathetic, cultured young women resulted in her type-casting in this sort of role, which was popular in the studio's films at the time.[2]

Tsukasa broadened her repertoire and gained critical recognition in films such as Aisai-ki (1958) and The Blue Beast (1960). For director Yasujirō Ozu, Tsukasa played the kind daughter of a middle-class family in Late Autumn (1960) and The End of Summer (1961), gaining further approval from the critics.[2] Other top directors with whom she worked were Akira Kurosawa (Yojimbo; 1961) and Kon Ichikawa. Her portrayals of psychologically complex roles in Mikio Naruse's Moment of Terror (1966) and Two in the Shadow (1967) were also noted by the critics.[2] These roles, along with her performance in Masaki Kobayashi's Rebellion (1967) are counted among the best of her career.[3]

Besides her more serious work, Tsukasa performed in many of Tōhō's comedy series throughout the 1960s, including the Five Gents series and the Salaryman series.[4] She also began appearing on television during the mid-1960s.[1] Her performance in Noboru Nakamura's 1966 film version of Sawako Ariyoshi's novel, The River Ki, earned Tsukasa critical acclaim. For her portrayal of the lead character, Hana Shintani, she was named Best Actress at three awards ceremonies: Blue Ribbon Awards, Kinema Junpo Awards, and the Mainichi Film Concours.[2][5]

In 1969 Tsukasa married Eisuke Aizawa,[2] and her married name became Yōko Aizawa (相沢葉子 Aizawa Yōko).[1] She began performing in stage productions in the mid-1970s.[2] By 1978 she had appeared in over one hundred films for Tōhō.[4] In the intervening decades she has continued to make occasional film appearances, with her last film role having been in 2003.[6]



  • [1954-08-31] Forever be Mine (Kimi shi ni tamou koto nakare / 君死に給うことなかれ, Maruyama)








  • [1961-02-25] Zoku sarariiman Chushingura (続サラリーマン忠臣蔵; Matsubayashi)
  • [1961-04-04] Eternity of Love (Wakarete ikiru toki mo / 別れて生きるときも; Horikawa)
  • [1961-04-25] Yojimbo (用心棒; Kurosawa)
  • [1961-06-17] Challenge to Live ("Chosen" yoi: Ai to honoo to / 愛と炎と; Sugawa)
  • [1961-07-01] A Night in Hong Kong (Honkon no yoru / 香港の夜 A NIGHT IN HONGKONG; Chiba)
  • [1961-10-29] The End of Summer (Kohayagawa-ke no aki / Early Autumn / Last of Summer / 小早川家の秋; Ozu)






  • [1966-01-03] Shacho gyojo-ki (社長行状記; Matsubayashi)
  • [1966-02-25] Zoku shacho gyogo-ki (Five Gents on the Spot / 続社長行状記; Matsubayashi)
  • [1966-04-16] Hikinige (Moment of Terror / ひき逃げ; Naruse)
  • [1966-06-11] The River Ki (Kinokawa: Hana-no maki, Fumio-no maki / 紀ノ川 花の巻 文緒の巻; Nakamura)
  • [1966-10-01] Jinchoge (The Daphne / 沈丁花; Chiba)







  • [1974-06-22] Nagare no fu: Doran, Yoake (流れの譜 第一部動乱 第二部夜明け; Sadanaga)
  • [1974-08-03] Nostoradamusu no daiyogen (Prophecies of Nostradamus / Castrophe 1999 / ノストラダムスの大予言 Catastrophe-1999; Masuda)


  • [1977-08-27] Gokumon-to (The Devil's Island / Island of Horrors / 獄門島; Ichikawa)


  • [1978-02-11] Joobachi (女王蜂; Ichikawa)
  • [1978-04-29] Zansho (残照)


  • [1980-10-25] Harukanaru soro (遙かなる走路)
  • [1981-07-11 ブルージーンズメモリー BLUE JEANS MEMORY  東宝映画
  • [1983-10-29 生きてはみたけれど 小津安二郎物語  松竹
  • [1986-03-01 愛の陽炎  松竹

Later FilmsEdit



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "司葉子" (in Japanese). Kinema Jumpo. Retrieved 2011-01-31.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 Hirano, Kyoko (2000). "TSUKASA, Yoko" in International Dictionary of Film and Filmmakers, ed. by Tom Pendergast, 4 volumes, Detroit [etc.]: St. James Press, 4th edition 2000, vol. 3: Actors and Actresses. pp.1218-1219.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Svensson, Arne. Japan (Screen Series), 1971. New York: A.S. Barnes. ISBN 0-498-07654-7.
  4. 4.0 4.1 司葉子 at the Japanese Movie Database
  5. "Awards for Yôko Tsukasa" at IMDb.
  6. Youko Tsukasa at the Internet Movie Database