Japanese actress Yuko Takeuchi has died aged 40 following an apparent suicide

Yuko Takeuchi has died aged 40.

The Japanese actress was found in the early hours of Sunday morning by her husband Nakabayashi Taiki at their Tokyo apartment.

It's believed that Yuko left no note before her passing but it's been reported that The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department has since launched an investigation but believe that she took her own life, according to The Japan Times.

The news of her death was confirmed by her management company in a statement to the Japanese outlet.

A spokesperson for Stardust Promotions Inc said: "It came all of a sudden, and we are all stunned and saddened by the news."

Since starting her career in 1996, Yuko has gone on to star in multiple television shows as well as Japanese films.

She bagged her first film role in 1998, starring in Japan's highest-grossing film, Ringu (1998) which later went on to be remade in Hollywood as The Ring in 2002.

Ringu took in £87.7 billion at the box office.

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She also took on the role of a female Sherlock Holmes in the 2018 Hulu and HBO production Miss Sherlock which was broadcast around the globe.

Yuko was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the Japanese Academy Awards for three consecutive years between 2004 and 2007.

Her last film, The Confidenceman JP: Princess, was released in July 2020.

Since the news of her passing broke, fans have flocked to social media to share their condolences.

One tweeted: "I hope you can live happily in another world. Always love Yuko Takeuchi."

A second added: "So sad to learn of Yuko Takeuchi's death when I woke up today. She was absolutely brilliant in Miss Sherlock, wishing her family and loved ones all the support they need."

"I know that you are flying to heaven, but we miss you. #YukoTakeuchi," said a third.

Yuko is survived by her husband Nakabayashi and their two children.

For emotional support, you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.

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