"For the Golden Globes, the first call I made was actually to my mother," he said. "She was in Japan and she started crying and I started crying. I promised myself with the Emmys that I wasn't going to cry. And so when I heard the news this time, again the first person I called was my mother. She was in Japan, again she started crying, again . . . and I couldn't stop."
Oka and his mother left Japan when he was 6 and settled in Los Angeles. He attended Harvard-Westlake School, then went on to Brown University, where he double-majored in computer science and mathematics. "I figured college was a social education, not just an academic education, so I wanted to grow socially," he said. "I was trying to figure out what was a great way to learn more about the human condition and be more comfortable with myself, so I tried theater." After graduation, while working at film effects company Industrial Light & Magic, Oka landed a few acting roles -- and the next thing he knew, he was a superhero in feudal Japan. A pretty cool place, indeed.
"American kids grow up on spaghetti westerns, and in Japan we'd watch samurai films," Oka said. "My childhood was pretty much studying for this role."