Born Jan. 8, 1912, in Tokyo. Japanese film director.
Imai studied at the University of Tokyo. He began working in films in 1939. He is director of the films Enemies of the People (1946), But Nevertheless We’re Alive (1951), Darkness Amid the Day (1956; based on a work by H. Masaki), Rice (1957), Revenge (1964), River Without a Bridge (1969–70; two parts), and Her Name Was O-en (1971; based on a work by J. O’Hara). He is one of the most important figures in the democratic current in Japanese cinematography. Reflected in his films are the significant social problems of Japan, including exhausting labor, unemployment, the machinations of the big concerns, judicial injustice, and the cruelty of the police. In 1951 he received the Peace Prize.