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Madame White Snake (1956)

Byaku fujin no yoren (original title)
Lavish Japanese-Chinese coproduction based on an ancient Chinese legend about a man who falls in love with a snake goddess in human form.


Shirô Toyoda


Toshio Yasumi
3 wins. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Ryô Ikebe ... Xu Xian
Shirley Yamaguchi ... Madam White (as Yoshiko Yomaguchi)
Kaoru Yachigusa ... Xiao-Qing
Kichijirô Ueda ... Wang Ming
Haruo Tanaka Haruo Tanaka
Eijirô Tôno
Yoshio Kosugi Yoshio Kosugi
Akira Tani Akira Tani
Ikio Sawamura Ikio Sawamura
Bokuzen Hidari
Yasuhisa Tsutsumi Yasuhisa Tsutsumi
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tateo Kawasaki Tateo Kawasaki
Nijiko Kiyokawa Nijiko Kiyokawa
Sumiko Koizumi Sumiko Koizumi
Yoshiko Miyata Yoshiko Miyata


Lavish Japanese-Chinese coproduction based on an ancient Chinese legend about a man who falls in love with a snake goddess in human form.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Romance | Fantasy




Hong Kong | Japan



Release Date:

22 October 1965 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Madame White Snake See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)


Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This was Toho's first tokusatsu (special effects) movie shot in color. See more »


Version of Green Snake (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

The Story of a Woman Who Is Not What She Seems
29 June 2019 | by Uriah43See all my reviews

This film takes place in China during the ancient Song Dynasty and starts with a young man named "Xu Xian" (Ryo Ikebe) meeting a young woman named "Bai Niang" (Shirley Yamaguchi) and her servant "Xiao-Qing" (Kaoru Yachigusa) on a ferry. Since it is raining Xu Xian offers his umbrella to Bai Niang who promises to return it to him and gives him her address. The next day he goes to see her and after a brief conversation he learns that Bai Niang has become attracted to him. However, even though he also shares this attraction, the fact that she comes from a noble family prevents the romance from going any further. At least, that is what Xu Xian believes. So when he is offered money by Bai Niang for their wedding he accepts it immediately and goes home to make plans. What he doesn't know is that there is much more to Bai Niang than meets the eye and that any relationship with her involves a great deal of risk on his part. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a rather strange film in that it featured Japanese actors in a Chinese setting. It also took a little while for the story to fully materialize but it became quite fascinating from that point. That said, I found this to be an enjoyable film for the most part and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Above average.

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