There is sad news coming out of Japan as we learn of the passing of veteran voice actor Toshiya Ueda. He died on February 8, sixteen days short of his 89th birthday.
A cause of death was not given. A family-only funeral has been held, and while surely many fans would have wanted to come and pay respects, it was the family’s desire to keep the funeral small and amongst themselves.
Ueda has a long list of voice work he’s done in anime, both as major roles and as a bit player. In terms of his bigger roles, he played Vilk in The Promised Neverland, “Grandpa Tommy” in Prince Mackaroo, Georges Lazare in Vampire Wars, Kakugen Yokoyama in Kennel Tokorozawa, Noriaki Watanabe in Midoriyama Kōkō Kōshien-hen, Kakugen Yokoyama in Kennel Tokorozawa, the Warden and Zhang Shangui in Riki-Oh: Tōkatsu Jigoku, and Ran Ōtei in Akai Hayate.
In addition to that, you can hear his voice in Lupin III: Part II, Golgo 13, City Hunter, Dirty Pair, Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam, and single episodes of One Piece, Ranma 1/2 and Sailor Moon, to name a few.
He also did voice work outside of anime, including doing the Japanese dubs of English programming. In this capacity, he was the voice of Owl in Kingdom Hearts II and Professor Norton Nimnul in Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers. In terms of live-action, he dubbed the voice for real-life Holocaust survivor Itzhak Stern (played by Ben Kingsley) in Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List. He additionally did voice-over work for TBS and NHK.
His talents earned him many fans in the anime world and beyond for his decades as a professional actor. The news of his passing came from his talent agency 81 Produce, which also just announced the passing of another star talent, 31-year-old voice actress Saki Nitta, who died from Meningioma.
Photo Credit: Seiyuu (Facebook)
Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin. She is also the author of its upcoming sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.