Arrow Recasts Oliver's Blade-Wielding Season 3 Mentor

Arrow Rila Fukushima Season 3

A substitute is stepping in as Arrow‘s new teacher.

Rila Fukushima, who co-starred in The Wolverine in 2013, has been tapped to play Tatsu Yamashiro — aka Katana — on Season 3 of The CW series. The Japanese actress replaces Devon Aoki, who reportedly pulled out due to a scheduling conflict.

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As previously reported, Tatsu is a deadly, sword-wielding martial arts expert — and wife of Oliver Queen’s teacher/handler Toshi — who will play a major role in Oliver’s journey to becoming the Arrow. She will be seen in flashbacks in Season 3, along with her husband.

TVLine’s sister site Deadline was first to report the news.

Season 3 of Arrow bows Wednesday, Oct. 8 at 8/7c.

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20 Comments
  1. We sure it’s a scheduling conflict and not that Rila’s a better actress?

    • wordsmith says:

      And/or more authentically Asian?
      I feel awkward bringing it up, but it’s definitely an issue to consider.

    • floacist says:

      Lol, whenever I hear ‘scheduling conflict’ for a recasting I am 99% sure that’s the PR version.

      • Quinn Mallory says:

        Didn’t Steve Aoki showed up as himself in season 1 of Arrow? You feel like that family may be friends with TPTB on the show, so the recasting may be legit.

        • Jon says:

          He did, he was playng a Oliver’s club opening in season 1. And Oliver claim the reason he could book him was because he “dated his sister”

      • Patrick says:

        Devon is a mom, and its possible that she is pregnant again. If she recently discovered the pregnancy, it may be that she wants out of a role that she can’t handle down the road.

  2. DougMac says:

    This applies to Flash too, right? Katana was supposedly showing up there as well.

  3. Behzad says:

    I love Devon Aoki and I was specifically looking forward to Katana’s arrival because of her :( I hope whatever she pulled out for is worth it, plus I saw The Wolverine and Rila had the screen presence of a cornflake. I hope she’s worked on it since.

    • wordsmith says:

      Pretty sure you’re thinking of the other female lead in Wolverine – she was definitely pretty and pretty boring. I thought Rila was actually fun to watch, with all the punk attitude and ninja skills. Her kid-sister vibe with Wolverine was refreshing.

  4. JC1 says:

    Awesome! I really liked her in The Wolverine. :)

  5. Steve F. says:

    Aw man… we lost Devon Aoki. But getting one of the best parts of The Wolverine (Rila Fukushima/Yuriko)? Sweet!

  6. Ben says:

    I was looking forward to Devon…. we’ll see how it works out.

  7. K says:

    First Devon has to drop out of Sin City 2 and now this? So disappointed, I really want to see her comeback, I wonder what “scheduling conflicts” she had because I haven’t seen her been cast in any other projects.

  8. Jon says:

    Alright then, maybe things got a little too meta with Steve Aoki already appearing as himself. Though playng both Marvel’s Yukio and DC’s Katana will get Rila Fukushima fairly typecast..

  9. Harvey says:

    Wasn’t Slade his Teacher?

    • Charles says:

      Slade was his teacher on the ISLAND. These flash backs will take place after he left the island but before he came back home.

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