|Other names||Yama (やまちゃん, Yama-chan) |
Bazooka Yamadera (バズーカ山寺)
|Height||176 cm (5 ft 9 in)|
Kōichi Yamadera (山寺 宏一, Yamadera Kōichi, born June 17, 1961) is a Japanese actor, voice actor, narrator and singer from Shiogama, Miyagi Prefecture. He graduated from Tohoku Gakuin University's economics school and is currently affiliated with Across Entertainment. Before that, he was affiliated with the Tokyo Actor's Consumer's Cooperative Society.
He is known for his roles in Cowboy Bebop (as Spike Spiegel), the Yakuza videogame series (as Shun Akiyama), Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū (as Sukeroku), Ghost in the Shell (as Togusa), Neon Genesis Evangelion (as Ryoji Kaji), Ninja Scroll (as Jūbei Kibagami), Dragon Ball Super (as Beerus), Anpanman (as Cheese), Ranma ½ (as Ryōga Hibiki/P-chan and the Jusenkyō Guide), Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (as Aberdt Desler) and the second generation voice of Koichi Zenigata ( Lupin III ).In the live action field, he is most known for voicing Will Smith (Yamadera met Smith several times ), Jim Carrey, Eddie Murphy, Stephen Chow, Robin Williams, Chris Tucker, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Brad Pitt, Charlie Sheen, Michael J. Fox, Michael Keaton, Will Ferrell, Jon Hamm and Mike Myers in the Japanese language releases of their respective films. He is the official dubbed voice of Donald Duck in Japanese. He also voiced Batman in the Japanese version of the film Batman Ninja . He's also been in every Pokémon film to date.
Yamadera was the manager of the Tagajō Senior High School basketball team before he made a name for himself. His voice acting debut was the OVA Megazone 23 as the motorcycle-riding Shinji Nakagawa, Banana Fritters (バナナフリッターズ, Banana Furittāsu). In October 1997, Yamadera became a host on the TV Tokyo children's variety show Oha Suta . In March 2016, after almost two decades, he announced his retirement from it.while his television debut was the anime Bosco Adventure as the cowardly Otter. Yamadera's break-out role as a voice actor was the anime Ranma ½ , in which he played the dual role of Hibiki Ryōga and the Jusenkyō Guide. In 1991, Yamadera joined forces with Toshihiko Seki and Noriko Hidaka to form the acting unit
In 2011, Yamadera took over the role of Koichi Zenigata in Lupin III media from Gorō Naya.
In a 2012 article by Japan Times, it was mentioned that he didn't consider doing voice acting at first, and was interested in going into sales or being an onscreen actor.
Yamadera's also known for his versatile range, as shown in the video game Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony where he voiced all five Monokuma Kubs, including Monophanie (female). According to the Danganronpa V3 official blog, Yamadera is the first person who came to mind as "the same person voicing multiple characters at the same time". No one has as much "multiple characters" experience as him. He was able to take the individual quirks of each of the Monokuma Kubs and make all of them unique.
Other notable examples of multiple voice acting include the Kingdom Hearts series where he voiced Donald Duck, Genie (from Aladdin ), Sebastian (from The Little Mermaid ), Beast (from Beauty and the Beast ), Mushu (from Mulan ), Jaq (from Cinderella ) and Stitch (from Lilo and Stitch ), and the Japan Animator Expo series of 35 short films where Yamadera and Megumi Hayashibara voiced all characters.
Yamadera is known as "the man with the seven-colored voice". During casting he is also said to be called "When in doubt, Yamadera".
In 2011 and 2017, TV Asahi conducted a poll among Japanese voice actors and actresses on "who they thought was really the most amazing person in their profession". Yamadera ranked first both times.In 2017, Niconico conducted a survey on popular anime voice actors and actresses. Yamadera ranked first overall, third among female voters and first among male voters.
In 2018, he joined the cast of the American animated web series Gen:Lock starring Michael B. Jordan.According to the series showrunner Gray Haddock, "Yamadera-san gives Kazu a fantastic balance of attitude and strength, and as anime fans we're doing our best not to geek out that he's joined the cast".
In 2019, Will Smith came to Japan for a solo interview, and at Smith's request, Yamadera performed a live voiceover, which was highly praised by Smith. This was aired on NTV's "news every." and "Oha!4 NEWS LIVE" on June 5 and June 11, respectively.
Yamadera married fellow voice actress Mika Kanai on May 23, 1993. They divorced in 2006, although it wasn't publicized until 2007.He then married Japanese voice actress Rie Tanaka on June 17, 2012, with a ceremony held in Hawaii on January 3, 2013. In August 2018, they announced that they had filed for divorce. On June 14, 2021, his marriage to radio personality Robin Shoko Okada was announced.
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Yamadera ("Cowboy Bebop," "Ghost in the Shell," "Dragon Ball Super") will voice Kazu Iida, one of the new recruits transferring from Japan's military forces to fight alongside Chase in the gen:Lock program.