Toshiro Mifune (三船敏郎) is considered the most prominent Japanese actor in the world. He teamed with the charismatic Japanese director Akira Kurosawa (黒澤明) for sixteen films during his career. He starred Kurosawa’s Rashomon (羅生門) , which made him world famous when it won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 1951. He won two Best Actor awards at the Venice Film Festivals, for Yojimbo (1961) and Red Beard (1965).
In 1961 Mifune appeared in the intrnational picture for the first time. In 1967 he costarred with Yves Montand in Grand Prix directed by John Frankenheimer. In 1971 he costarred with Alain Delon and Charles Bronson in Red Sun directed by Terence Young.
George Lucas reportedly considered Mifune for the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars Episode Ⅳ( 1977), but Mifune turned down the offer.