Hiroyuki Sanada got into professional acting originally intending to be an action star. He studied martial arts starting at age 11 under action legend Sonny Chiba. Through the 1970s until the late 1990s, Sanada acted exclusively in Japanese films, the majority of which I haven’t seen. However, he did play a major role in Ring and Ring 2, and following a stint with the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1999-2000, he began acting in North American productions as well. Other notable credits of Sanada’s include The Last Samurai, Sunshine, Rush Hour 3, Speed Racer, Lost, Revenge, and the upcoming The Wolverine. Hiroyuki Sanada turns 52 today.