Marlon Brando's part in the movie was so convincingly Japanese, that many theater managers reported moviegoers coming to them and demanding their money back because (to put it simply) Marlon never appeared on screen.
On Okinawa, the village of Tobiki where the story is supposed to take place, does not really exist. However, on the southern part of the island near the capital city of Naha, there really is a Teahouse of the August Moon, which is now a popular restaurant that features local cuisine and Ryukyuan folk dancing.
The original Broadway production of "The Teahouse of the August Moon" by John Patrick opened at the Martin Beck Theater in New York on October 15, 1953, ran for 1027 performances and won the 1954 Tony Award for the Best Play. Paul Ford recreated his stage role in the movie version.