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Name: オダギリジョー Name (romaji): Odagiri Joe Real name: 小田切譲 / 小田切让（おだぎり・じょう） / Odagiri Jou Profession: Actor Date of birth: 1976-Feb-16 Birthdate: Tsuyama, Okayama prefecture Star sign: Aquarius Height: 176cm Weight: 60kg Blood type: O Talent agency: Dongyu
Odagiri Joe was born in Tsuyama, Okayama prefecture, a small town in central Japan renowned for its beautiful cherry blossoms in the spring. Though he was accepted by Kochi University, he turned it down for an opportunity to study in the United States. He had originally intended to study movie directing at California State University in Fresno, but mistakes in the application process landed him in acting classes. It may have been a blessing in disguise, for two years studying in Fresno and later starring in a few stage performances in Japan, Odagiri would find himself catapulted to fame in his role in the Kamen-Rider series, playing the central character, Godai Yuusuke. He became the predecessor of the “Ikemen Hero craze (literally, “good-looking actors playing hero roles in popular TV series ).
Commonly known just as Odajoe, and also known for unusual hairstyle, he has starred in such films as the Katsuhiro Otomo-directed live-action movie adaptation of the manga and anime series, Mushishi, where he was featured as the main character, Ginko, as well as other well-known films such as SHINOBI – Heart Under Blade.
Originally debuting with his birth name, 小田切譲, he changed his name from the Kanji form to the Katakana form (form used primarily in the translation of Western names), オダギリジョー, since his first name is often misread as “Yuzuru”, instead of “Jo.” (“Jo” is not the most common way to read his first name.) Another reason for his name change is that he used the western name “Joe” when he attended California State University (CSU) as an arts major.