Akira Kurosawa

World-renowned director Akira Kurosawa was born March 23, 1910, in Tokyo, Japan. After art training, he apprenticed at a film studio in 1936 and began directing during the war years. It was in the postwar period that his films began to be hailed as masterpieces of action, insight and style in the West.

Rashomon (1950) was awarded the Best Foreign Film Oscar, and four years later, the international success of The Seven Samurai propelled Kurosawa to the forefront of filmmaking giants for decades to come. These and his later films have inspired numerous Hollywood remakes and imitations, the most famous example being 1960's The Magnificent Seven, a Western remake of The Seven Samurai.

His later works include Yojimbo, Dersu Uzala, Kagemusha and Ran. Kurosawa was awarded an Honorary Oscar in 1990 and died in Tokyo in 1998.