IMDb > Sansho the Bailiff (1954)
Sanshô dayû
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Sansho the Bailiff (1954) More at IMDbPro »Sanshô dayû (original title)

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Fuji Yahiro (screenplay)
Yoshikata Yoda (screenplay)
View company contact information for Sansho the Bailiff on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1955 (USA) See more »
A film of unparalleled beauty by the great Japanese Master Kenji Mizoguchi
In mediaeval Japan a compassionate governor is sent into exile. His wife and children try to join him... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Luminous See more (44 total) »


  (in credits order)

Kinuyo Tanaka ... Tamaki
Yoshiaki Hanayagi ... Zushiô
Kyôko Kagawa ... Anju
Eitarô Shindô ... Sanshô dayû
Akitake Kôno ... Taro
Masao Shimizu ... Masauji Taira
Ken Mitsuda ... Prime Minister Fujiwara
Kazukimi Okuni ... Norimura
Yôko Kosono ... Kohagi
Kimiko Tachibana ... Namiji
Ichirô Sugai ... Minister of Justice
Teruko Ômi ... Nakagimi
Masahiko Kato ... Young Zushio
Keiko Enami ... Young Anju
Bontarô Akemi ... Kichiji
Chieko Naniwa ... Ubatake
Kikue Môri ... Priestess
Ryôsuke Kagawa ... Ritsushi Kumotake
Kanji Koshiba ... Kaikudo Naito
Shinobu Araki ... Sadaya
Reiko Kongô ... Shiono
Shôzô Nanbu ... Masasue Taira
Ryônosuke Azuma ... Landlord
Saburô Date ... Kimpei
Sumao Ishihara ... Yakko
Ichirô Amano ... Guard
Yukio Horikita ... Jiro
Hachiro Okuni ... Saburo Miyazaki
Jun Fujikawa ... Kanamaru
Akiyoshi Kikuno ... Guard
Sôji Shibata ... Sado Man
Akira Shimizu ... Slave Trader
Goro Nakanishi ... Guard
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Naoki Fujima
Sachio Horikita
Eiji Ishikura ... Farmer #1
Midori Komatsu ... Harbour's lady
Keiko Koyanagi
Kazuko Maeda
Tokio Oki ... Harbour's man
Shiro Ozaki ... Farmer #3
Akira Shiga ... Farmer #2
Sachiko Sôma ... Sugano

Directed by
Kenji Mizoguchi 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Ogai Mori  short story "Sanshô dayû"
Fuji Yahiro  screenplay
Yoshikata Yoda  screenplay

Produced by
Masaichi Nagata .... producer
Original Music by
Fumio Hayasaka 
Kinshichi Kodera 
Tamekichi Mochizuki 
Cinematography by
Kazuo Miyagawa 
Film Editing by
Mitsuzô Miyata 
Production Design by
Hisakazu Tsuji 
Art Direction by
Kisaku Ito 
Set Decoration by
Kosaburô Nakajima 
Costume Design by
Shima Yoshizane  (as Shima Yoshimi)
Makeup Department
Ritsu Hanai .... hair stylist
Masanori Kobayashi .... makeup artist (as M. Kobayashi)
Production Management
Hiroshi Ozawa .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Tokuzô Tanaka .... assistant director
Art Department
Akira Naitô .... assistant art director
Uichiro Yamamoto .... set designer
Sound Department
Iwao Ôtani .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
En'nosuke Asada .... still photographer
Yasuo Iwamoto .... lighting technician
Kenichi Okamoto .... gaffer
Shôzô Tanaka .... camera operator
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Yoshio Ueno .... costume researcher
Other crew
Yoshikazu Fujiwara .... architecture researcher
Emi Kimura .... archivist
Genjirô Nakamura .... stage manager
Tasaburô Oota .... background design
Hiroshi Shibata .... movement director

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Sanshô dayû" - Japan (original title)
"Legend of Bailiff Sansho" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
124 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

In all previous versions of the tale of Zushiô and Anju that exist, Anju is depicted as Zushiô's older sister. However, for this film, the director, Kenji Mizoguchi, was so determined to cast as Anju the talented young Kyôko Kagawa - who was, in fact, considerably younger than Yoshiaki Hanayagi, who plays Zushiô - that in the film he depicted Anju as Zushiô's younger sister.See more »
Taro:Even children as young as you are sold and bought, treated like animals, and nobody questions it. What a horrible world.See more »
Movie Connections:


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55 out of 64 people found the following review useful.
Luminous, 23 November 2002
Author: allan825 from Colorado Springs terms of both substance and style, a cinematic achievement of the very highest order. Like all great works of art, it is incomparable, although it would not be misleading to place it in the company of the very best of Renoir, Ford, and Kurosawa. It has the same kind of compassionate humanism, high-caliber storytelling, and effortless-seeming mastery of the medium...the same generosity.

I prefer this film even to the great (and much better-known) Ugetsu. And I know now why Welles once said that Mizoguchi "can't be praised enough, really." I hope one day this film will be as well known as it deserves to be.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (44 total) »

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'Sansho the Bailiff' or 'Seven Samurai': which do you prefer? ottffsse_sequence
Did I miss something? antonioiam
1 Question (spoilers) kpjf
Finally in the top 250!!!!! nicknc1214
why didn't the sister? (spoiler) dpnguyen29
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