Behind the Scenes of the “Johnny’s Sexual Assault Issue,” Other Firms Are “Recruiting” and Promoting “K-Pop Idols | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Behind the Scenes of the “Johnny’s Sexual Assault Issue,” Other Firms Are “Recruiting” and Promoting “K-Pop Idols

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Noriyuki Higashiyama, the new president of Johnny’s, and Yoshihiko Inohara, the president of the “Jr. development” subsidiary.

Like an avalanche, one after another, major companies have begun to leave Johnny’s – one after another.

Asahi Group HD, Kirin HD, Nissan Motor, Suntory, Itoham, McDonald’s, etc……. are all major corporations that are no strangers to the Japanese, and one after another, they have announced their intention to “not renew the contract after the expiration of the term” of their commercial contracts with the Johnny’s office. Morinaga Milk Industry Co.

Morinaga Milk Industry has appointed Yoshihiko Inohara for its yogurt commercials, Tokyu Land HD has appointed Junichi Okada for its “Tokyu Livable” commercials, and Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance has appointed Junichi Okada and Daigo Nishihata of “Naniwa Boys” for its commercials. Naturally, they, too, will be affected.

The concern is whether or not Japanese celebrities will be able to continue to appear on TV and radio programs after companies decide not to use them in their advertisements.

If a company that has clearly stated that it will not use Johnny’s celebrities in its advertisements has Johnny’s celebrities appearing on programs that it sponsors, or sponsors programs with Johnny’s titles, it will be criticized for its lack of consistency in its policy.

Although the sponsors have stated that they will not interfere with the appearance of Johnny’s talent on their programs, I believe that there will be silent and voiceless pressure.

If the TV stations continue to have Johnny’s talent on the program, there is a possibility that sponsors will leave, but if sponsors leave, program production will not be possible. If this happens, there is a fear that the TV stations will drop the Johnny’s talents due to “discovery”. In fact, some of them have been affected.

There are actually some cases where this is having an impact. It is no exaggeration to say that programs cannot be made without their appearances.

For now, it seems that the situation is being saved by the voice that says “the talent is blameless,” but I don’t think it can go on like this. It is inevitable that TV stations that continue to contract with Johnny’s will be blamed for the situation.

If this is the case, as long as the talent is a member of Johnny’s, it will be difficult for them to appear on TV and radio in the future. Is there any way for Johnny’s talents to survive?

The quickest way is to leave the firm. In this day and age, you can get as much work as you want as long as you have talent, even if you don’t belong to a big firm. If you are a talent who has earned a position, I don’t think you will have any trouble. Nowadays, you won’t be under any strange pressure. ……

Furthermore, I have heard that there are several major agencies that have come forward to Johnny’s and said, “We’ll take care of it. There are also some that are approaching individual talents. However, the agencies will never want to let go of the talent they have now,” said a senior executive at a well-established entertainment company.

The company receives several tens of billions of dollars every year from fan club membership fees, live performances, and merchandise sales. Even if they stop appearing on TV, there will be no major damage to the agency.

In other words, the decision not to charge management fees but to give all appearance fees and other compensation to the talent was probably a desperate measure to keep the talent around,” said an executive from a well-established entertainment company.

At this rate, there is no end to the possibility that Johnny’s talent will disappear from TV, but if that happens, how will the TV station fill the gap?

In fact, a producer at one of the key stations mentioned above says that they are already thinking about their next move.

K-pop idols are replacing Johnny’s talent,” said a producer at a key station. There are more than 100 male and female idols in total.

Their popularity is tremendous, and although they have not yet reached the level of Johnny’s, they have reached a point where they are comparable. Some of their fans are even covered with Johnny’s fans. I don’t mean to put it this way, but compared to Johnny’s talent, their singing and dancing seem more complete, and I think their quality as a talent is higher.

Perhaps in anticipation of this, some of the existing major entertainment companies have already affiliated with K-pop idols or formed business partnerships with them.

Even when K-pop was first introduced to Japan, the major entertainment companies in Japan formed business partnerships with K-pop idols and sold them to TV stations by force, or rather, by “screwing” them. I don’t think the disappearance of Johnny’s will change the nature of the industry. ……” (a staff member of a wide-ranging TV show)

Now that Johnny’s is no longer influential, there is more than one production company trying to replace it. Unless the attitude of TV stations changes, the distorted composition of the entertainment industry will not change even if the map of power in the entertainment industry is rewritten – and it will not change.

  • Interview and text by Hiroyuki Sasaki (entertainment journalist) Hiroyuki Sasaki (Entertainment Journalist)

    Born in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture, Hiroyuki Sasaki became a reporter for FRIDAY at the age of 31, reporting numerous scoops during his time with FRIDAY and later working mainly for weekly magazines. Currently, he also appears on TV and radio as a commentator.

  • PHOTO Kazuhiko Nakamura

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