Being a newcomer, I formally introduced myself on the set: 'My name is Akira Takarada. I'll be playing the lead. Pleased to meet you all,' in a very loud voice. The head lighting technician at the studio said, 'Idiot! You're not the lead. The lead actor is Godzilla.' I said, 'Yes, of course.' He'd put me in my place.
— Akira Takarada, recalling the filming of Godzilla (1954)
Akira Takarada (宝田明 is a Takarada Akira)Japanese actor best-known among kaiju fans for playing Hideo Ogata in the original Godzilla and assorted roles in many subsequent entries in the franchise and other science-fiction films produced by Toho. He is one of three actors to appear in Godzilla films from the Showa, Heisei, and Millennium series, along with Kenji Sahara and Hiroshi Koizumi. He was also the first actor from the Toho Godzilla series to be cast in an American Godzilla film, portraying a Japanese immigration official in one of the first scenes shot for Legendary Pictures' Godzilla, although his scene was ultimately cut from the film. In recent years, he has become a frequent guest at American science-fiction conventions.
- Godzilla (1954) as Hideo Ogata
- Half Human (1955) as Takeshi Iijima
- The Three Treasures (1959) as Prince Wakatarashi
- The Last War (1961) as Takano
- Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964) as Ichiro Sakai
- Invasion of Astro-Monster (1965) as Astronaut Kazuo Fuji
- Ebirah, Horror of the Deep (1966) as Yoshimura
- King Kong Escapes (1967) as Lt. Commander Jiro Nomura
- Latitude Zero (1969) as Dr. Ken Tashiro
- Godzilla vs. Mothra (1992) as Environmental Planning Board Chief Joji Minamino
- Godzilla vs. Destoroyah (1995) as Hideo Ogata [stock footage from Godzilla]
- Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) as UN Secretary-General Naotaro Daigo
- Godzilla (2014) as Japanese Immigration Agent [deleted scene]
- The Great Buddha Arrival (2018) as himself
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