Monthly Archives: October 2014

I LOVE JAPAN ❤ 日本の今を伝えたい! 白川由美様 お誕生日おめでとうございます! Happy Birthday, Yumi Shirakawa!


Happy birthday, Yumi Shirakawa!



October 21 marked the 78th birthday of a Japanese actress who has been in the business for well over a half century. Her name is Yumi Shirakawa, and if you’re familiar with her name or work at all, it’s likely due to the fact that she starred in many kaiju movies for Toho Studios. Her most notable kaiju film role is in Rodan (1956), in which she portrays the love interest of leading man Kenji Sahara. Ms. Shirakawa would often be paired with Sahara in numerous films throughout the ’50s, including The Mysterians (1957) and The H-Man (1958).



Toho Studios billed her (and Sahara) as being “the hope of 1957,” and the studio’s hope was fulfilled. Ms. Shirakawa became a successful leading lady at the studio, working with most of the top actors. Her other SF/fantasy roles include such celebrated titles as The Secret of the Telegian, Gorath (1962), and Adventure in Kigan Castle (1966).



But there’s more to Ms. Shirakawa than her science fiction credits. She worked with director Yasujiro Ozu in The End of Summer (1961), co-starring with Setsuko Hara and Akira Takarada. Ms. Shirakawa would continue to work with many notable directors at Toho Studios, including: Yasuki Chiba, Kihachi Okamoto, Shue Matsubayashi, and Hiroshi Inagaki.



For decades, Ms. Shirakawa was married to actor Hideaki Nitani, most famous as a star for rival Nikkastu Studios. However, Nitani died in January 2012. Despite the loss of her husband, Ms. Shirakawa still acts to this day, mostly for TV dramas.



We here at Blossoming Japan would like to extend our birthday wishes to Ms. Shirakawa! Her movies have been enjoyed around the world for more than 50 years, and while she may not be a household name on a global scale, her screen presence is always appreciated by the millions of monster movies fans worldwide. Happy birthday, Shirakawa-san!



I LOVE JAPAN ❤ 日本の今を伝えたい! もしもしにっぽん FESTIVAL 2014


Have you ever wondered what foreigners like about Japan?


At the end of September, there was a Japanese pop-culture festival held in Sendagaya’s Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. It was called the Moshi Moshi Festival.



Foreigners were invited to come and see some of the best cultural quirks that Japan has to offer!



Non-Japanese were allowed to enter for free and sample traditional Japanese food like Takoyaki, Okonomiyaki and Yaki-soba.


Some notable performers featured in the big event such as Kyary Pamyu Pamyu and There was also an array of booths set up in the auditorium for Japanophiles, ranging from “kawaii” fashion freebies to free pictures with some of Japan’s famous mascots and characters.


The festival was not just for non-Japanese residents however. So if you have time next year, be sure to drop by and revel in some of your home culture’s unique offerings to the world!