• Kyodo News

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Actress Junko Ikeuchi died Sunday afternoon of lung cancer at a Tokyo hospital, her office said Thursday. She was 76.

Ikeuchi, whose real name was Sumiko Nakazawa, made her screen debut with “Kotaishi no Hanayome” (“The Crown Prince’s Bride”) in 1955 after working at a department store, and became a marquee actress for Shintoho Pictures Co.

A native of Tokyo, Ikeuchi played various roles on stage and in several TV dramas. She also headlined many performances at the Meijiza theater in Tokyo.

For her contributions to the arts, she was awarded the Medal with Purple Ribbon in 2002 and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, in 2008 from the government.

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