Voice Actor Chafurin to Replace Ichirô Nagai as Sazae-san's Father
posted on by Egan Loo
Fuji TV announced on Monday that 52-year-old voice actor Chafurin will succeed Ichirô Nagai as the voice of Sazae-san's father Namihei Isono. Nagai passed away on January 27 at the age of 82.
According to Fuji TV, Chafurin already finished recording his first episode on Thursday, and that episode will air next Sunday, February 16. Nagai's last episode as Namihei just aired this Sunday.
Chafurin's dozens of voice acting roles include Hidejii in Chibi Maruko-chan (another popular, decades-long anime which airs on Sunday evenings on Fuji TV, right before Sazae-san) and Inspector Megure on Detective Conan. He has also had a broad career dubbing overseas films into Japanese.
The decision on the second voice of Namihei Isono was made after Nagai's memorial services last Monday. The Daily Sports newspaper had reported on that day that the role will be filled for the time being by the show's staff. Fuji TV had said as recently as Wednesday that the studio was still in the process of recasting the role.
Chafurin commented that Nagai was a great mentor that he admired. "The news of his sudden passing filled me with sorrow. I want to faithfully play this role to the fullest and not tarnish the image of the Namihei Isono character that Nagai developed." Nagai had originated the role, popularly considered the "father of Japan," when the anime series premiered in 1969.