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THE NGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

Akiko Iwase

Actor, writer, & producer

Born and raised in Tochigi, Japan. After high school, she pursued higher education in the U.S. and graduated from the College of William and Mary in Virginia. Upon graduating, Akiko returned to Japan and began her acting career in Tokyo. She has been acting on stage, in film, and on TV ever since.

In 2008, she founded her own theater company called “Bion,” where she serves as an actor, writer, and producer. Her first appearance in an international film was in “The Forest” (2016), directed by Jason Zada, followed by the Netflix movie “Earthquake Bird” (2019), directed by Wash Westmoreland and produced by Ridley Scott, in which Akiko worked alongside Oscar winner Alicia Vikander. She later appeared in “Minamata” (2020), directed by Andrew Levitas. When it premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival, she participated in the press conference and walked the red carpet with Johnny Depp, Bill Nighy, and Hiroyuki Sanada.

Akiko also stars in the popular TV series “Tokyo Vice,” appearing in both seasons as the mother of a leading character, Sato. As a writer, she has penned numerous plays and TV dramas, including the popular Japanese detective series “Tokuso 9.” Her screenwriting and film production debut occurred in 2021 with the mid-length film “Lunar Maria,” followed by the feature film “A Matter of Sharing” (2023).