Local investigators suspect that he either plunged accidentally into the sea or committed suicide. Ikeda had written on his Twitter account that he wanted to die under the setting sun in the Ise-Shima district.
His body was spotted about 80 meters from a lighthouse on Cape Daiozaki in Shima, Mie Prefecture, on Dec. 26. An autopsy has suggested that he died on the night of Dec. 25 from loss of blood as a result of a broken pelvis.
A native of Yamagata, Ikeda joined Nikkatsu Studio in 1974 after graduating from Waseda University, and made his directorial debut with "Sukeban Mafia Rinchi." He won an award at the 6th Yokohama Film Festival for his 1984 work, "Ningyo Densetsu." His latest film was 2008's "Aki Fukaki," which depicts the romance between a junior high school teacher and his wife.