Miyoshi Umeki


Miyoshi Umeki (梅木 美代志, Umeki Miyoshi, or ミヨシ・ウメキ Miyoshi Umeki, May 8, 1929 – August 28, 2007) was a Japanese-American singer and actress. She was a Tony Award- and Golden Globe-nominated actress and the first Asian woman to win an Academy Award for acting for her performance in Joshua Logan’s Sayonara (1957), with Marlon Brando, Patricia Owens, James Garner, Martha Scott, Miiko Taka, Red Buttons, and Ricardo Montalbán.

Umeki’s other English language films include George Marshall’s Cry fort Happy (1961), with Glenn Ford, Donald O’Connor, James Shigeta, and Taka; Henry Koster’s Flower Drum Song (1961), with Nancy Kwan, Shigeta, Jack Soo, Benson Fong, and Juanita Hall; Richard Thorpe’s The Horizontal Lieutenant (1962), with Jim Hutton, Paula Prentiss, Jack Carter, Jim Backus, and Charles McGraw; and John Sturges’s A Girl Named Tamiko (1962), with Laurence Harvey, France Nuyen, with Martha Hyer, Gary Merrill, and Michael Wilding.

Umeki also appeared in various TV shows including The Donna Reed Show (1958-1966), with Donna Reed, Carl Betz, Shelley Fabares, and Paul Petersen; Dr. Kildare (196–1966), with Richard Chamberlain and Raymond Massey; Rawhide (1959-1965), with Eric Fleming and Clint Eastwood; Mister Ed (1958-1966), with Alan Young and Connie Hines; The Virginian (1962-1971), with James Drury, Doug McClure, Lee J. Cobb, and Gary Clarke; Burke’s Law (963-1966), with Gene Barry, Regis Toomey, and Gary Conway; and was part of the main cast of The Courtship of Eddie’s Father (1969-1973), with Bill Bixby, Brandon Cruz, Kristina Holland, and James Komack. After Courtship ended, she retired from acting.

Each review will be linked to the title below.

(*seen originally in theaters)

(**seen rereleased in theaters)

  • Uchôten jidai (1951) – directed by Masaki Môri – uncredited
  • Youthful Jazz Daughter (1953) – directed by Shûe Matsubayashi
  • Around the World Revue (1956) – directed by George Robinson – short
  • Sayonara (1957) – directed by Joshua Logan
  • Cry for Happy (1961) – directed by George Marshall
  • Flower Drum Song (1961) – directed by Henry Koster
  • The Horizontal Lieutenant (1962) – directed by Richard Thorpe
  • Teahouse of the August Moon (1962) – directed by George Schaefer – TV movie
  • A Girl Named Tamiko (1962) – directed by John Sturges
  • The Touching and the Not Touching (1965) – directed Randall Hood