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Rinko Kikuchi

Rinko KikuchiRinko Kikuchi (菊地 凛子), born on January 6th, 1981 in Hadano, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan is a Japanese actress. She is the first Japanese actress to be nominated for an Academy Award in 50 years. Besides Rinko, the only other Japanesse actresss to have been nominated for an Oscar was the actress Nancy Umeki, who won the award for best supporting actress for her role in the 1957 Hollywood film Sayonara. Rinko was nominated for her role in the 2006 movie Babel, which starred Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett. She also starred in the Guillermo del Toro science fiction film called Pacific Rim.

Rinko made her debute in 1999, using her birth name, Yuriko Kikuchi, in the Kaneto Shindo film Ikitai (生きたい). Two years later in 2001, she starred in the Kazuyoshi Komuri film Sora no Ana (空の穴), which was featured at several international film festivals, including the Rotterdam Film Festival. In 2004, she appeared in the Katsuhito Ishii film Cha no Aji (茶の味), which was shown at the Cannes Film Festival that year. But it was her portrayal of a troubled deaf mute teenager in the film Babel that brought this delightful actress to the attention of film-goers around the world. She has been nominated and won several awards for her film performances and gotten the attention of film audiences in Japan as well as the US and Europe.

Rinko KikuchiIn 2006, she was cast by Japanese film producer Yoko Narahashi in the Alejandro González Iñárritu film called Babel, in which she played Chieko Wataya, a deaf-mute teenage girl. It was a role for which she attracted international attention leading to nominations for numerous awards, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. Of the awards she was nominated for she won several, such as the National Board of Review Award for Best Breakthrough Female Performance, which she tied for with Jennifer Hudson, as well as the Gotham Award for Best Breakthrough. Rinko is also only the fifth actress in Academy Award history to be nominated for an award for a role in which she does not speak a word. Rinko has appeared in two Mamoru Oshii movies: The Sky Crawlers in 2008 and Assault Girls in 2009.

She starred in Rian Johnson's second film, The Brothers Bloom in 2009, which was her first fully English-language feature. Though she plays a main character, she only speaks three words in the film as her character is said to only know three words of English.

In March 2011, she was named to the cast of 47 Ronin led by Keanu Reeves, the first English-language adaptation of the Chushingura legend, Japan's most famous tale of samurai loyalty and revenge. In 2013, Rinko starred along with Charlie Hunnam and Idris Elba in the film Pacific Rim, directed by Guillermo del Toro.

Rinko KikuchiRinko was almost unknown in her native Japan, as she was just an ordinary actress and her previous roles were mostly in low-budget domestic films. After starring in Babel with Brad Pitt, she was suddenly featured in television broadcasts and graced the covers of magazines and daily papers, making her role in Babel her breakthrough role. She won the Gotham Awards for Best Breakthrough; she was also nominated for a Golden Globe, a Golden Satellite, and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actress; and she won the National Board of Review for Best Breakthrough Female.

The film Babel has two central themes – culture and communication. The movie begins with a tragic incident involving an American couple in Morocco and a chain of events for four families in different countries throughout the world. Tied by the circumstance but separated by continents, cultures and languages, each character discovers that it is family that is ultimately important. In the film Rinko acts out as a rebellious deaf Japanese teenage girl named Chieko, who is traumatized by the recent suicide of her mother and a sense that she is not seen by others. As a response to her feelings she has started exhibiting sexually provocative behavior, such as wearing a short skirt without any panties. She attempts unsuccessfully to initiate a sexual encounter with her dentist and even goes so far as to try to seduce a police detective who visits the house to question Chieko’s father about a gun he owns.

Rinko KikuchiThe audition process for her to get the role in Babel actually took over a year. She got to know Alejandro through his other movies “21 Grams” and “Amores Perros”. It was these two movies which inspired Rinko to appear for an audition for Babel. When she was asked about the character in the movie on how she expressed her sexuality, Rinko said:

“Being sexual is certainly part of her character, but as far as that scene is concerned, yes she does strip herself naked, but it is more of an emotional longing, a basic human need, a desire to have someone by her side who understands her. That was the most important aspect that I paid attention to, in that scene she basically has nothing to lose, nothing more to lose, so she is throwing herself at this man just so she can have an emotional connection. So to me that feels like a very basic human need”.

Rinko followed up her success in Babel with a number of highly acclaimed international films such as the Rian Johnson film The Brothers Bloom in 2008 with Adrien Brody and Rachel Weisz, the Isabel Coixet film called Map of the Sounds of Tokyo in 2009 with Serge Lopez, a Mikael Håfström film named Shanghai in 2010 with John Cusack and Ken Watanabe, and the Anh Hung Tran film called Norwegian Wood in 2010 - a highly anticipated adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s international best selling novel of the same name. In 2011 Rinko shot 47 Ronin, a Hollywood adaptation of an old Japanese samurai legend combining elements of a historic epic and fantasy, with Keanu Reeves.

Rinko KikuchiHer latest film, Pacific Rim is a 2013 American science fiction film directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Robert Kazinsky, Max Martini, and Ron Perlman. The credits at the end of the film dedicate the film to Ray Harryhausen and Ishirō Honda, who helped to establish the monster movie genre with films such as The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms and Godzilla. The film is produced by Legendary Pictures, distributed by Warner Bros and was released on July 12th, 2013 including releases in 3-D and IMAX 3D. Upon its release it garnered generally positive reviews with the visual effects and action sequences being highly praised. The film received average box office returns in the United States, but was highly successful in other territories, earning more than $384 million worldwide.

Background information from Wikipedia

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Year Title Director Notes
1999 Will to Live Kaneto Shindo
2000 By Player Kaneto Shindo
Akai Shibafu Mieko Umeuchi
2001 Paradice Tatsuya Moriyama
Sora no Ana Kazuyoshi Kumakiri
Drug Hiroshi Sugawara
2002 Hachigatsu no Maboroshi Kosuke Suzuki
2003 Jyunanasai Hoka Kinoshita
2004 Tori Tadanobu Asano
Cha no Aji Katsuhito Ishii
69 sixty nine Sang-il Lee
Survive Style 5+ Gen Sekiguchi, Taku Tada
Riyū Nobuhiko Obayashi
2005 Tagatameni Taro Hyugaji
2006 Naisu no Mori: The First Contact Katsuhito Ishii, Shunichiro Miki, Hajime Ishimine (ANIKI)
Warau Michael Issei Oda
Babel Alejandro González Iñárritu Austin Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actress
Capri Exploit Award
Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Gotham Award for Breakthrough Performance (tied with Shareeka Epps)
National Board of Review Award for Breakthrough Performance - Female
Palm Springs International Film Festival Award for Best Ensemble Cast
San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
San Francisco Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Nominated — Central Ohio Film Critics Association for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Performer
Nominated — Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Breakthrough Performance
Nominated — San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated — Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
2007 Zukan ni Nottenai Mushi Satoshi Miki
2008 The Brothers Bloom Rian Johnson Nominated — Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actress
The Sky Crawlers Mamoru Oshii voice only
2009 Map of the Sounds of Tokyo Isabel Coixet
Sideways Cellin Gluck
Assault Girls Mamoru Oshii
2010 Shanghai Mikael Håfström uncredited
Norwegian Wood Tran Anh Hung Nominated — Asian Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated — Asian Film People Choice Award for Favorite Actress
2013 Pacific Rim Guillermo del Toro
47 Ronin Carl Rinsch

Awards and nominations

Year Group Award Result Film
2006 Gotham Awards Breakthrough Award Won Babel
Best Ensemble Cast Won
National Board of Review Best Breakthrough Performance - Female Won
Austin Film Critics Association Best Supporting Actress Won
Chicago Film Critics Association Awards Best Supporting Actress Won
Most Promising Performer Nominated
2007 Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated
Online Film Critics Society Awards Best Breakthrough Performance Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role Nominated
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture Nominated
Golden Globes Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture Nominated
Academy Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role Nominated
2009 Chlotrudis Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated The Brothers Bloom
2011 Asian Film Awards Best Actress Nominated Norwegian Wood

Rinko Kikuchi Official Pacific Rim Interview - Celebs.com


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Babel is inarguably one of the best films of 2006. Director Alejandro González Iñárritu and his co-writer, Guillermo Arriaga weave together the disparate strands of their story into a finely hewn fabric by focusing on what appear to be several equally incongruent characters: an American (Brad Pitt) touring Morocco with his wife (Cate Blanchett) become the focus of an international incident also involving a hardscrabble Moroccan farmer struggling to keep his two young sons in line and his family together. A San Diego nanny, her employers absent, makes the disastrous decision to take their kids with her to a wedding in Mexico. And a deaf-mute Japanese teen (the extraordinary and beautiful Rinko Kikuchi) deals with a relationship with her father and the world in general that's been upended by the death of her mother.
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Norwegian Wood

Based on the best-selling coming-of-age novel by world-renowned author Haruki Murakami (Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles), this lush, gorgeously photographed adaptation features an original score by Grammy winning Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead. Tokyo in the late 1960s, students around the world are uniting to overthrow the establishment and Toru Watanabe's personal life is similarly in tumult. At heart, he is deeply devoted to his first love, Naoko (Rinko Kikuchi), a beautiful and introspective young woman.
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Pacific Rim

If the prospect of two-plus hours of 250-foot mechanical men pummeling enormous alien creatures from another dimension is just what you've been waiting for, oh, boy, does Guillermo del Toro have a treat for you. The celebrated director--one might even say visionary--has pulled off the most elaborate B-movie heist ever with this huge-budget special effects extravaganza that revels in catchphrase cliché dialogue, a howlingly obvious script, and the most breathtaking homage to Japanese monster and mecha cinema, manga, and comic tradition.
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Andre Agassi Foundation

The Andre Agassi Foundation for Education is an educational organization dedicated to transforming U.S. public education for underserved youth. The Foundation drives reform by engaging in practice, policy and partnerships that provide quality education and enrichment opportunities.
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Heinz Food Program

A hidden hunger is limiting the potential of millions of children around the world. Caused by a lack of essential vitamins and minerals, iron-deficiency anemia can impair physical and mental development, weaken the immune system and increase child mortality before the age of five. The Heinz Micronutrient Campaign is dedicated to preventing this hidden hunger. Through partnerships with governments and NGOs it is providing innovative, cost-effective solutions to give children the opportunity to lead healthy, productive lives.

Denim Day Cancer Program

Lee National Denim Day is a fundraiser created by Lee Jeans to support the American Cancer Society breast cancer programs. Since its inception in 1996, Lee National Denim Day participants have raised more than $88 million for the fight against breast cancer. With your help, they hope to add to that total. Your donation of $5 today helps the American Cancer Society discover new ways to prevent, find, and cure breast cancer while ensuring access to mammograms and providing free support to people with the disease. Lee National Denim Day occurs during the month of October,but you can help them raise money year-round.

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Help advance the health, safety, and well being of women throughout Haiti in some of the poorest slums in all of the western hemisphere at Wharf Jeremy and Cité Soleil. We Advance directs assistance where security issues deter the work of most international NGOs - starting from the bottom because it is where your assistance is needed the most.
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Yabanci is a book by a Dutch woman who moved from Holland to Turkey to start a new life in a Turkish village overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. A great read for those who are considering a move abroad or have lived in a different culture. Available in English as an ebook or in Dutch in both print and popular ebook formats... take a look

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