On September 7, Johnny’s announced that Noriyuki Higashiyama (56) would become president of the company at a press conference held in response to the sexual assault scandal involving the late founder, Johnny Kitagawa. Higashiyama also expressed his determination to help the victims, but what will inevitably attract renewed attention in the future is his own spectacular “history with women. Higashiyama, who married actress Yoshino Kimura (47) in October 2010, is the father of two daughters, the oldest aged 11 and the youngest aged 10, but now that he is the head of an office in the middle of a whirlwind, there is a possibility that his past “shin scars” will be rehashed.
Higashiyama made a spectacular debut in 1985 as a member of “Shonen-tai. He is known as one of Johnny’s most “motley handsome men” with his handsome looks, well-trained body, and cool prince-like character.
In September 1990, Higashiyama had his first female problem. In September 1990, Higashiyama was reported by some media to have gone on a drive with Yoko Minamino (56), a popular idol.
Higashiyama denied the allegations in the media, saying, “I was never conscious of dating. The relationship has since disappeared. Riho Makise, 51, who at the time was enjoying a break as a purist actress, was named as his next partner. In November 1990, a women’s magazine photographed Higashiyama taking Makise home after a dinner party.
In December 1991, they double-starred in a stage production of “Barcelona Story” and became close friends. Some media reported that they had been dating for about nine years. Makise seemed to have a strong desire to get married, but Higashiyama was at the peak of his popularity and was in no condition to make a goal, so they broke up by the late 1990s.
In June 2002, “FRIDAY” reported that Higashiyama stayed overnight with Emi Takeuchi, 46, an ace TV Asahi announcer. Higashiyama commented that she was “a good friend and a woman who can stimulate each other,” but the relationship was never heard of again. Furthermore, in January 2007, some sports papers wrote about a passionate love affair with actress Rina Uchiyama (41), whom he approached after co-starring in a TV drama. At that time, only Uchiyama’s office acknowledged the relationship, but less than a year later, in November of the same year, it was reported that the relationship had broken up.
Uchiyama’s marriage to Kimura was the result, but it is believed that Uchiyama had several relationships with women that have not yet surfaced because he was so popular. He was even alleged to be in love with Keiko Fujishima Julie, 57, daughter of Mary, who recently stepped down as president of the company.
However, at that time, the Johnny’s office was not in an atmosphere in which the talent could enter into marriage of their own volition, as Mary Kitagawa, the vice president with absolute power, had her nose in their private lives. It is believed that Higashiyama realized that he could not get married, and some of them chose to part ways.
In the midst of all this, there was also a “cheating allegation” that Higashiyama would “hate to recall. In 2012, “FLASH” reported a “secret meeting” with a gravure idol who was active with her glamorous body and good looks.
The article stated, “Higashiyama visited the home of this gravure idol and stayed there for a long time. The idol commented to the magazine that she and her friends were there, but at an event immediately after the report, Higashiyama gave an unclear explanation, saying, “I want to make sure there are no misunderstandings.
If they had had an affair in the same house, it would have been a “cheating affair” right after their marriage, and it would have been very dangerous. The truth is still murky, but I suspect that this is the kind of female problem that he would most prefer not to have dredged up.
More than 11 years have passed since then. It can be said that by accepting the position of the new president, Higashiyama is now in a position where his past behavior is more likely to be scrutinized.
I remember a report circulating at the time that the relationship between the two was said to have ended after the report of their secret meeting, and that the gradol’s side had expressed shock at being cut off coldly by Higashiyama, as if she had been played and “dumped” by him. Although the truth is unknown, Higashiyama may be very wary of having his past relationships with women re-examined and rehashed by those involved.
When Higashiyama was single, he could not publicly declare his love for a woman because he was Johnny’s’s top talent, so he sometimes broke up with a woman when he was about to be exposed. It is not impossible that some of his former girlfriends may come forward in the future.
At the press conference on September 7, Higashiyama was asked about his own sexual misconduct, but he answered, “It is possible that I have done so, and it is also possible that I have not done so. Higashiyama is retiring from performing at the end of the year.
Higashiyama will retire from performing at the end of this year, but his management skills as well as his own compliance may be questioned in the future.
PHOTO： Toshihiro Nakaikawa (1st and 2nd), Tetsuko Takemoto, Ippei Hara