Japanese actor, Akira Kubodera, has died and the cause of death is suspected to be suicide according to Japanese media. The 43-year-old was found in a coma at his apartment in Tokyo on Friday (November 13) and was pronounced dead after arriving at the hospital.
Preliminary investigations by the police showed that Kubodera committed suicide. The actor’s agency confirmed his passing in a press statement on Saturday. They added that the death was so sudden that both his family and his co-workers could not accept it.
The actor was born and grew up in Tokyo. Kubodera was discovered by a talent agent when he was an undergraduate. He started modelling in 1995 and in 1999 went on to the stage before moving on to TV series in 2003. Kubodera was most famous for playing the character Kunzite in Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon (2003 to 2004), a TV adaptation of the manga series Sailor Moon.
Kubodera has also acted with late actress Yuko Takeuchi in the movie Strawberry Night (2013) and with late actor Haruma Miura in the TV series Last Cinderella (2013). Kubodera’s income was said to be severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic due to a reduction in acting gigs. Last week, he promoted on social media his stage show which was to run in January.
The Japanese entertainment industry has been hit by a spate of suicides in recent months. Takeuchi, 40, actress Sei Ashina, 36, and actor Takashi Fujiki, 80, were found dead at their respective homes in September. Miura, 30, was found dead in his home in July, while professional wrestler and reality series Terrace House star Hana Kimura died in May at age 22.
Kudodera announced at his 15th-anniversary fan meeting on January 23, 2011 that he had been married to actress Hiroko Omori since 2007. He played Kanai in Kamen Rider Blade and Aberu in Kamen Rider Kiva. He later played Doctor Fujita in Kamen Rider OOO. The actor also played Yuji Toba in GoGo Sentai Boukenger. He previously portrayed Kanai (Giraffa Undead) in Kamen Rider Blade and Kunzite in Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon.