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Kayako Saeki (佐伯 伽椰子, Saeki Kayako) is a character in the Ju-on horror franchise. In all films up to The Grudge 2, she is portrayed by actress Takako Fuji. Fuji retired the role after the film and was replaced by Aiko Horiuchi in The Grudge 3, while Anna Moon took the role in the web series Tales from the Grudge. Actress Misaki Saisho played Kayako in Ju-on: Beginning of the End and its sequel Ju-on: The Final Curse, while Runa Endo played Kayako in Sadako vs. Kayako, Tomoko Sato played Kayako in Scary Movie 4. She was created by director Takashi Shimizu. She represents a popular antagonist in Japanese culture, the vengeful ghost (Onryō). She is typically characterized by long dark hair covering her pale face, unsettling wide eyes, twisted movements with crunching neck bones, and a haunting death rattle. She first appeared in Shimizu's short movie Katasumi and spends the majority of the Ju-on series haunting a house in Nerima, Japan. She is one of the fulfillers of the Ju-on curse, which states that when someone dies in a state of intense rage, those feelings remain at the death site and kill whoever it touches.

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