At 55 years old, Kotaro is a veteran theatrical, movie and television actor, though his stage performances usually tend towards Shakespeare rather than shinigamis. He's played the lead in Titus Andronicus, Othello, Anthony and Cleopatra and Henry IV, while supporting roles in various Shakespearian productions make up the majority of his acting credits.
When it's not Shakespeare, the classics abound in his theatrical resume - be that dramatic plays like One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Clockwork Orange, or musicals such as Blood Brothers.
We always knew that Death Note was something special, but viewed from the context of Kotaro Yoshida's CV, the story becomes a classic by default!
But just in case you thought it was all centuries old lovey stuff with our new Ryuk, then here he is on guitar, with a (presumably) spontaneous recital of Radiohead's No Surprises in a restaurant.
His love of Shakespearian productions continued throughout his time at Sophia University. Upon graduation, he joined Shiki Theatrical Company in order to indulge that passion. The group were well known for staging the Bard's plays.
From there, he became part of Japan's Shakespeare Theatre troupe - which did precisely what it says on the tin - where the actor was generally credited under his alternative stage name Yoshida HaganeTaro.
Within nine years, he was a recognised Heisei showman. The accolades poured in, some as part of the company, but others were personal. In 1998, Kotaro received the 6th Yomiuri Theatre Award for Excellence for his performance in Merchant of Venice at the Tokyo Globe Theatre. In 2001, it was his starring role in Hamlet which added the 36th Kinokuniya Theatre Award to his trophy cabinet.
By 1997, Kotaro had formed his own Shakespearian theatrical company - Troupe AUN - with fellow showman Kurita Yoshihiro. Here he was able to direct, as well as act in, the productions. As Yoshida HaganeTaro, he remains the president of Troupe AUN.
He is currently touring Japan in a production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar.
I wonder what his take is on apples...?