Studio Ghibli, Pokémon Voice Actor Kumiko Okae Dies from COVID-19

Pokemon and Studio Ghibli voice actor Kumiko Okae died in hospital following complications relating to COVID-19. Her passing was confirmed by her management on May 15.

The actor and host was 63 years old. Okae was hospitalized on April 3 with a high fever. Her condition had worsened after she received radiation therapy in January, which she required following surgery for breast cancer.

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Okae began her acting career in 1975 in the TBS Television’s Omitsu. She is best known for her voice work in the 2005 film Pokémon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew as Jenny, along with anime classics The Dog of Flanders and Studio Ghibli’s The Cat Returns, for which she provided voice work for Elina and Naoko, respectively.

Along with voice work, Okae made a name for herself in live-action fares such as Attack No. 1, Wild MomLucky Seven and the Mikkai no yado film series. She was a well-known host for programs such as NHK’s Renso Game and TBS Television’s Hanamaru Market from 1996-2014. Her last role was in the 2017 NTV mini-series My Lover’s Secret.

Okae is survived by her husband Baku Ohwada, and daughter Miho, both well known in the acting field.

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(via Deadline)

It announced today that Pokemon and Studio Ghibli voice actor and host Kumiko Okae passed away from COVID-19.

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