Old good "Emo-chan" of modern Japanese cinema. Emo's father was a close friend of legendary episode player Taji Tonoyama in elementary school days. His mother's grandfather ran a shamisen store in Ginza, Tokyo. Both parents like movies and theaters. After graduating from Machinery Department of Tokyo Industrial High School, Emoto got a job at a trading company. However, he became an actor and became a student of the acting classes of the theater company "Marui", which is headed by Nobuo Kaneko, and met Yusaku Matsuda who was in the same class. In 1999, he won the Japanese Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance in Dr. Akagi. He also won the award for best supporting actor at the 7th Hochi Film Award for Dotonbori River and Hearts and Flowers for Tora-san.