Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

Highest Rated: 97% Kubo and the Two Strings (2016)

Lowest Rated: 0% Showdown in Manila (2018)

Birthday: Sep 27, 1950

Birthplace: Not Available

Charismatic, muscular, handsome, and often exuding a dangerous sexuality, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa specializes in playing the evilest of vile villains, most of whom despite their exceptional martial arts skills, are skilled in spectacular manners. Tagawa's willingness to accept villainous roles such as that of the wicked sorcerer Shang Tsung in Mortal Combat (1995) has drawn criticism from certain Asian American groups, who fear that he is perpetuating negative stereotypes, but Tagawa offers an interesting perspective, citing the fact that the action film is the most popular genre worldwide. When Tagawa plays a bad guy, he plays it to the hilt, trying to imbue his villains with depth to demonstrate that in order to be so successful at being bad, they must possess a certain amount of positive qualities, including discipline, intelligence, and commitment. In his personal life, Tagawa is the antithesis of the characters he plays. He is known for his unusual courtesy, non-violent demeanor, his wisdom, and for his unflagging devotion to helping young people. A deeply spiritual man, Tagawa has developed a unique philosophical approach to martial arts, Chun Shin, which primarily centers on developing the inner state and spirituality of the practitioner rather than on the physical movements of fighting. The purpose of the exercises of Chun Shin is to release the energy centers within, creating a harmony between mind and body. Tagawa was born in Tokyo, Japan, the son of a Japanese American father and a Tokyo actress. His father, a native of Hawaii, worked for the U.S. military and when Tagawa was five, his family moved to Texas. This was during the 1950s, when racism was rampant throughout the South. For Tagawa, the change from a supportive environment to a hostile one was a great shock. As a young adult, Tagawa briefly attended the University of Southern California where he studied martial arts. The following year, he returned to Japan to further his studies at a prestigious school under the tutelage of master Nakayama, one of the most highly regarded fighters in Japan. But for Tagawa, there was a spiritual component missing from training -- that, and perhaps the feeling that he was not accepted into Japanese society, led him to return to the U.S.Although he had been interested in acting for many years, Tagawa did not become an actor until he was 36 years old. He made his feature film debut in The Last Emperor (1984) and went on to work steadily in feature films and on television. Many of his film appearances have been in the direct-to-video category. Still, Tagawa has managed to develop a devoted following and has at least one web site devoted to him on the Internet. As mentioned, Tagawa specializes in villains, but occasionally he plays different roles as he did in the much-honored independent drama Picture Bride (1994) in which he plays a sugar cane farmer who orders a Japanese mail-order bride 25 years younger than himself. The latter 1990s also found Tagawa's Hollywood work coming more frequently and in larger profile releases. After small roles in such films as Vampires (1998) and Snow Falling on Cedars (1999), Tagawa could be seen in such eagerly anticipated large-scale productions as Pearl Harbor and Planet of the Apes (both 2001).


Highest Rated Movies



0% Showdown in Manila Actor 2018
97% Kubo and the Two Strings Hashi $48.1M 2016
24% Little Boy Hashimoto $5M 2015
No Score Yet L'homme aux poings de fer 2 The Mayor 2015
No Score Yet The Man with the Iron Fists 2 Lord Pi 2015
No Score Yet Ninja Apocalypse Fumitaka 2014
No Score Yet Tekken: A Man Called X (Tekken: Kazuya's Revenge) Heihachi Mishima 2014
16% 47 Ronin Shogun Tsunayoshi $20.6M 2013
No Score Yet Black Cobra Actor 2012
64% Hachi: A Dog's Tale Ken 2009
No Score Yet Tekken Heihachi Mishima 2009
No Score Yet By the Will of Genghis Khan Bodyguard 2009
No Score Yet Bodyguard: A New Beginning Kai 2008
No Score Yet The Tomb Len Burris 2008
21% Balls of Fury Mysterious Asian Man $32.9M 2007
No Score Yet Johnny Kapahala: Back on Board Actor 2007
No Score Yet Ichijiku no kao (Faces of a Fig Tree) Oto Kadowaki Jr. 2006
No Score Yet The Slanted Screen Actor 2006
35% Memoirs of a Geisha The Baron $57.1M 2005
No Score Yet Faith of My Fathers Cat 2005
11% Elektra Roshi $24.2M 2005
No Score Yet Baywatch Hawaiian Wedding Mason Sato 2003
40% The Last Warrior (Coastwatcher) Imperial Marine 2001
44% Planet of the Apes Krull $178.1M 2001
24% Pearl Harbor Minoru Genda $197.8M 2001
16% The Art of War David Chan $29.5M 2000
No Score Yet The Ghost Actor 2000
39% Snow Falling on Cedars Zenhichi Miyamoto 1999
No Score Yet Top of the World Capt. Heller 1999
No Score Yet Johnny Tsunami Johnny Tsunami 1999
No Score Yet Bridge of Dragons Ruechang 1999
No Score Yet Tom Clancy's 'Netforce' Leong Cheng 1999
40% John Carpenter's Vampires David Deyo 1998
No Score Yet The Provocatuer Actor 1998
No Score Yet Provocateur Actor 1998
42% The Phantom Kabai Sengh 1996
No Score Yet Danger Zone Chang 1996
No Score Yet White Tiger Chow 1996
No Score Yet Soldier Boyz Vinh Moc 1996
No Score Yet Natural Causes Somchai 1995
47% Mortal Kombat Shang Tsung 1995
82% Picture Bride Kanzaki 1995
No Score Yet Thunder in Paradise III Actor 1995
No Score Yet The Dangerous Kon 1994
33% Rising Sun Eddie Sakamura 1993
No Score Yet Nemesis Angie-Liv 1993
78% American Me El Japo 1992
No Score Yet Mission of the Shark Hashimoto 1991
45% The Perfect Weapon Kai 1991
No Score Yet Not of This World Yamamoto 1991
33% Showdown in Little Tokyo Funekei Yoshida 1991
20% Kickboxer 2: The Road Back Sangha 1990
No Score Yet L.A. Takedown Hugh Denny 1989
76% Licence To Kill Kwang 1989
44% Twins Oriental Man 1988
No Score Yet Spellbinder Lt. Lee 1988
No Score Yet Bulletproof Actor 1988
90% The Last Emperor Chang 1987
77% Big Trouble in Little China Actor 1986
No Score Yet Armed Response Toshi 1986


75% Lost in Space
Hiroki Watanabe 2019
84% The Man in the High Castle
Tagomi 2018
89% Grimm
69% Revenge
Takeda Tagawa 2013
No Score Yet Hawaii Five-0
Hiro Noshimuri 2011
20% Hawaii
Capt. Terry Harada 2004
No Score Yet Walker, Texas Ranger
Master Ko 2000
No Score Yet Nash Bridges
Lt. A.T. Shimamura 2000
No Score Yet Seven Days
Peter 1999
No Score Yet Stargate SG-1
Turghan 1997
No Score Yet Babylon 5
Morishi 1995
No Score Yet Baywatch
43% Alien Nation
Yamato 1989
97% Moonlighting
Artist 1989
89% Star Trek: The Next Generation
Mandarin Bailiff 1989
No Score Yet Miami Vice
Tegoro Fujitsu 1989
0% Space Rangers


Cate Wilson says: It's been a while.

Ken says: It certainly has.

Cate Wilson says: It's ten years. Can you believe it?

Shogun Tsunayoshi says: For the crime of disobedience, you should all be executed as common criminals, but you and your men follow the old ways of Bushido, to honor your lord and avenge treachery. I see only samurai before me.

Shang Tsung says: One last chance, Sonya. Fight me in Mortal Kombat.

Sonya Blade says: Go to hell.

Shang Tsung says: (Laughs) Take her away, the emperor will be overjoyed.

Shang Tsung says: Take her away, the emperor will be overjoyed.

Sonya Blade says: My friends will come.

Johnny Cage says: They're already here.

Shang Tsung says: It has begun!

Liu Kang says: All those souls you've stole are one of your own. I pity you sorcerer.

Shang Tsung says: Save your pity for the weak.

Liu Kang says: Surrender, it's over.

Shang Tsung says: Flawless victory.

Shang Tsung says: Finish him!

Shang Tsung says: Your brother's soul is mine.

Chan says: LIU!!

Chan says: Liu!

Shang Tsung says: You will be next.

The Baron says: Mameha asked me to show you my kimono collection. It's quite venerated. My grandfather and father collected kimonos. I've given a number of valuable kimonos to Mameha; I like to give presents to beautiful girls.

Shang Tsung says: Your soul is mine!

Ken says: [Talking in Japanese] It's been a year, hasn't it? I wake up sometimes in the middle of the night and think about Parker. He was a good friend. I understand how you feel. Hachi, my friend, Parker is never coming home. But if Hachiko wants to wait, then Hachiko should wait. You want to wait for him, don't you? Have a long life, Hachi.

Ken says: [talking in Japanese] It's been a year, hasn't it? I wake up sometimes in the middle of the night and think about Parker. He was a good friend. I understand how you feel. Hachi, my friend, Parker is never coming home. But if Hachiko wants to wait, then Hachiko should wait. You want to wait for him, don't you? Have a long life, Hachi.

Shang Tsung says: Fatality.

Shang Tsung says: Let Mortal Kombat begin.

Sonya Blade says: When I want back-up, I'll radio for it.

Johnny Cage says: Got that radio handy.

Shang Tsung says: Scorpion and Sub-Zero. Deadliest of enemies but slaves under my power.

Ken says: Ronnie - 11 years: Where did Grandpa find Hachi?

Cate Wilson says: Ronnie, actually, Hachi found your grandfather.