Takiko Mizunoe, First Woman Producer on Japan
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Takiko Mizunoe, First Woman Producer on Japan

Takiko Mizunoe 1936

Her real name was Umeko Miura, she was born in Otaru, Hokkaido on February 20, 1915, the seventh daughter of eight siblings. She and her family eventually moved to the Meguro district of Tokyo where she was raised along with her brothers. In 1928, she joined a female-only theater group called Takarazuka Revue, part of the Shochiku opera company, where she was assigned the stage name of Takiko Mizunoe. While in Takarazuka they pioneered the trend of women acting male roles, the actresses covered their hair under a hat, Mizunoe cut her short hair, a novelty for her time, which also marked the characteristic style of Mizunoe : “cross-dressed fair lady”.

Takiko’s speech in the Pink Strike

At the age of 18, Mizunoe led one of the few successes of the Japanese labor movement, the so-called “Pink Strike“, a strike made up of influential young women in the artistic world, by this point Mizunoe was already a kn9own actress. The movement lasted a month, Mizunoe along with 50 other young women were arrested, but eventually the movement was successful, the company offered better working conditions and an increase in the salary for musicians.

Before World War II, Takiko continued to become known for her male roles, with critics describing her as a symbol for women in opera, she traveled through southeast China, Europe, and the United States, but with the outbreak of World War II she had to return to Japan, where the government banned men’s clothing for women and Takiko was forced to act exclusively in female roles.

At the end of the war, Takiko began her film career, beginning in 1949 with the movie “Hana Kurabe Tanuki Goten“, she even appeared on television in a New Year’s show. In 1959, she was hired by the oldest production house in Japan “Nikkatsu“, thus becoming the first Japanese woman to be a producer, her first film as a producer being “Hatsukoi Kanariya Musume” which was released the following year. Takiko produced dozens of movies and discovered and promoted actors and actresses who would pursue a successful career in the film industry in Japan, such as Ruriko Asaoka and Masumi Okada, during her 16-year career as a producer.

Takiko on Hana Kurabe Tanuki Goten

Upon retirement, Takiko continued to appear on television until 1987, when an incident caused him to withdraw from public life in Japan, retiring at his home in Kanagawa Prefecture, where she died in 2009 at the age of 94.


Wikipedia (2020) Takiko Mizunoe. Recuperado el 2 de agosto de 2020 de: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takiko_Mizunoe