Another one of the classic actresses of the Japanese Golden Age has left us. Yumi Shirakawa passed away on June 14th at 79. Shirakawa is best known by genre fans for her roles in early Ishiro Honda kaiju features: Kiyo in Rodan (1956) (Kenji Sahara's character's love interest) and Etsuko Shirashi in the masterpiece, The Mysterians (1957).
Her later contributions to tokusatsu were Honda's The H-Man (1958) and Gorath (1962), as well as Shue Matsubayashi's The Last War (1961). A versatile talent of the late 1950s, Shirakawa was seen in much more than effects films. She was featured in many comedies, musicals, dramas and chanbara, or samurai/swordsman films--In the case of The Princess of Badger Palace (1958) she played a spirit in a story that borderline represented all of these genres.
In 1964 she married actor Hideaki Nitani (The Submersion of Japan ). By the mid-1980s Shirakawa had found success in television and continued to act for the small screen until her passing.
Before her death, Nitani passed away from phenomena in 2012. Both Shirakawa and her husband are survived by their daughter, actress Yurie Nitani. Our prayers and love go out to Ms. Nitani and her family.
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