×

Actor and Activist Rodney Kageyama Dies at 77

Actor, activist and influentials member of the Japanese American community, Rodney Kageyama, died in his sleep Dec. 9. He was 77.

The SAG member was known for roles in “Karate Kid IV” with Hillary Swank, Ron Howard’s film “Gung Ho” and the spinoff sitcom, and the TV movie “Hiroshima: Out of the Ashes” with Max Von Sydow.

Kageyama was an important activist for the Asian American community. He was a regular emcee in downtown Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo, and was praised for using his voice to advocate for Asian American representation in the entertainment industry. A member of several social activist groups and community organizations, Kageyama was associated with The Asian American Pacific Artists Association, The Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment (CAPE), East West Players, The Japanese American National Museum, and Nisei Week Japanese Festival.

Before he moved to Los Angeles in 1979, Kageyama began his acting career in San Francisco in 1965 as an original member of the Asian American Theater Company. In Los Angeles, he joined the East West Players as an actor, director and designer, where he played Erronius in a 2001 all Asian American production of the musical “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.” In 2005, the EWP awarded him the Ray Creevy Award at their 29th anniversary celebration.

He has been volunteering at the Japanese American National Museum for the past ten years, where he started a children’s storytelling program. He was honored just last month at the Aquarium of the Pacific’s Autumn Festival.

Kageyama is survived by his husband, Ken White.

More Film

  • Ridley Scott Matt Damon Ben Affleck

    Ridley Scott, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck Team on Revenge Film 'The Last Duel'

    Ridley Scott looks to have his next directing job, as he has signed on to direct “The Last Duel” with Matt Damon and Ben Affleck attached to star. Damon, Affleck and Nicole Holofcener penned the script with Scott, Damon and Affleck all producing along with Scott’s producing partner Kevin Walsh. The project has been set [...]

  • Jonathan Taylor Thomas Ed Asner Elliott

    Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Ed Asner, Elliott Gould Seek SAG-AFTRA Board Seats

    Ed Asner, Elliott Gould and Jonathan Taylor Thomas are seeking SAG-AFTRA national board seats as members of presidential candidate Matthew Modine’s progressive Membership First slate. Asner is the former president of the Screen Actors Guild, serving two terms from 1981 to 1985, and winning five Emmys for his role as Lou Grant and two others [...]

  • Natalie Portman Thor Comic Con

    Comic-Con: Marvel 'Shock and Awe' Strategy Dominates Twitter Buzz

    Disney’s Marvel Studios handily won the hype trophy from this year’s Comic-Con International San Diego. Marvel Studios — which returned to the 2019 Comic-Con stage with a chock-full Phase 4 slate of announcements — dominated the discussion on Twitter out of the convention, capturing the biggest volume of buzz for nine of the top 10 [...]

  • Chris Rock - Netflix

    Chris Rock's 'Saw' Reboot Moves Up Five Months to May 2020

    Lionsgate has moved Chris Rock’s upcoming “Saw” reboot forward by five months to May 15, 2020, vacating the pre-Halloween date of Oct. 23, 2020. The studio indicated Monday that it decided to move the untitled “Saw” movie into the summer slot after seeing early footage from the set of the film currently shooting in Toronto. The move [...]

  • Peter Farrelly

    Peter Farrelly to Judge Sun Valley Film Festival's Film Lab Competition

    Sun Valley Film Festival has set “Green Book” director Peter Farrelly as the judge for the sixth annual Film Lab competition. The program, sponsored by Tito’s Handmade Vodka, which is in its sixth year, selects one team of filmmakers to work with the festival to complete their film projects. The director and producer of the [...]

  • The Lion King

    'The Lion King' Dominates, But Is Disney Running Low on Remakes?

    “The Lion King” and its massive $185 million domestic debut proved that audiences have an insatiable appetite for Disney’s remakes and re-imaginings. Despite mixed reviews, moviegoers turned out in force for director Jon Favreau’s hyper-realistic update of the classic cartoon. “The Lion King” broke numerous box office records, including the best start among Disney’s live-action [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content