Mana Ashida (芦田 愛菜 Ashida Mana) is a Japanese child actress and singer best known for her roles in the films Usagi Drop and Confessions. She portrays a young Mako Mori in Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim.


Ashida's rise in prominence in Japan began with with her first appearance in Asahi Broadcasting Corporation's ABC Short Movie 2; she gained greater notoriety after she was cast in the television drama Mother[1]. Ashida became the youngest actress and lead actress in a Japanese drama when she starred in Sayonara Bokutachi no Youchien and later, Marumo no Okite in Spring of 2011. Later 2011 saw her gain more critical praise as an actress when she starred alongside actor Kenichi Matsuyama in the manga adaptation of Usagi Drop.[1]

Signing a deal with Universal Music, Ashida released her first single in October 2011. Her debut album, Happy Smile!, was released November 23 and debuted in 8th position on the Oricon weekly charts. She was the youngest artist, at seven years five months, to have an album in the top ten position.[1] Ashida auditioned for the role of Mako Mori in Pacific Rim in October 2011. The judges were reportedly impressed with her level of expression and she was later cast.[1]


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  • Mana Ashida

    • She without a doubt was the best Actor in the movie. I was amazed at the range of emotions she portrayed for such a young person. Wow! ...