While the names of Ren Meguro and Kazuya Ninomiya are also being mentioned… The name of the “unexpected superstar” who is likely to be the next to leave Johnny’s in a blitz. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

While the names of Ren Meguro and Kazuya Ninomiya are also being mentioned… The name of the “unexpected superstar” who is likely to be the next to leave Johnny’s in a blitz.

I still can't follow new president Noriyuki Higashiyama...... "spin-off" proposal is being floated, while former Kiss Mai member Hiromitsu Kitayama has joined "TOBE" and "Kose" is recommended to move to a new company. What is the decision of "Arashi," "Snow Man," "NEWS," and "Travis Japan" members?

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Tadayoshi Okura (38) of “Kanjani Eight” was rumored to be leaving the group due to poor health, but he later denied it on a TV program saying, “I’m going to stay with the group.

Show must go on.

This is the motto that the late Mr. Janney Kitagawa passed down to the talents in his company. However, because of Mr. Janney, the talents found themselves in a situation where they could not continue to put on a show.

More than 25 companies have announced that they will discontinue commercials or review contract renewals. The cosmetics company Kose announced a comment urging the talents to move on (later removed and corrected). I think the message was, ‘We want to use you as long as you are no longer affiliated with Johnny’s.'” (source from an advertising agency)

The companies that stopped using the Japanese talents in their advertisements are also sponsors of TV programs and movies, and the backlash from the companies means that the Japanese talents will lose their main battlegrounds.

For successful talents such as Ren Meguro (26) of “Snow Man” fame, the transfer of his company would bring back advertising deals. Within Johnny’s, there is some concern from talents who often appear in TV variety shows and dramas. On the other hand, those who only work on the stage or at local stations have expressed their intention to remain at the office.

In such a situation, there is a movement to make the group independent as a company and form a business tie-up. The first of these is “Kanjani Eight.

In 2009, “TOKIO Inc.” was established as an affiliate of Johnny’s with the members of “TOKIO” on the board of directors. At that time, Shingo Murakami (41) asked Taichi Kokubun (49) about the incorporation in detail. Murakami, who has a broad face, could go independent like Masahiro Nakai (51), but he would also take into account the feelings of Tadayoshi Okura (38), who wants to train his junior staff, and others and ask for a spin-off company.

In addition, there is a possibility that “Arashi,” Johnny’s’ top earner, will be spun off as well.

Arashi” is currently on hiatus. The name of “Arashi” is being kept in order to stop the departure of Ono Satoshi (42), who was a sympathizer of Mr. Janney, and the group is effectively disbanded. Kazuya Ninomiya (40) and Sho Sakurai (41) alone could go independent, but Matsumoto Jun (40) is willing to remain with the office. If the signboard “Arashi” is dropped, there will be a big loss in the fan club business. He may restart as “Arashi Inc.” like “TOKIO.

Kazunari Ninomiya (40) and Masaki Aiba (40) decided to suspend their activities in accordance with Ono’s wishes, but there is no prospect for them to resume their activities. Aiba has increased his acting activities, perhaps in anticipation of a prolonged hiatus.

From the youngest to the most famous

With “Arashi” and “Kanjani Eight,” it is conceivable that some of them may choose to follow the lead of their seniors and become independent. However, more and more mid-career talents will choose to become independent or transfer to other companies in order to make the most of their talents.

Hiromitsu Kitayama (38), formerly of Kis-My-Ft2, has announced that he will join TOBE. They were doing only individual work, and group work was drastically decreasing. Yuta Tamamori (33) has also already chosen to work on his own and has kept in touch with Kitayama, who has moved on.

Kato Shigeaki (36) of “NEWS,” who works as a writer, is also not particular about his affiliation. On the other hand, if the tight-knit members of “SixTONES” were to move, they would probably move with the group.

The successful members of Johnny’s are all in their 20s, but most of the K-pop idols who are active outside of Johnny’s are in their teens or 20s. Jr. idols of the same generation are also looking for more opportunities.

Netflix and others will probably not use Johnny’s in their new productions until the end of next year, including “Resignation Janis. However, the current Jr. groups are making a certain amount of money from their YouTube videos and live performances alone. It is not surprising that “Bishonen” and “HiHi Jets” may decide to move on.

Last year, “Travis Japan” made their debut in the U.S., but reports of sexual assault have made it difficult for them to perform overseas. Hideaki Takizawa (41), who nurtured them, left the company and was not promoted within the office. It is believed that they are likely to be transferred to “TOBE” (a person related to a major record company).

Furthermore, with the appointment of Noriyuki Higashiyama (56) as president, there are whispers of that charismatic figure leaving the company.

Takuya Kimura (50). He is not interested in fostering younger members or producing, and had been considering going independent for some time, but he was put in the lineup to support Higashiyama along with Inohara Yoshihiko (47) and Kokubun. It seems that they want to find the right time to leave the company if they are going to be involved in troublesome internal politics and be used by Keiko Fujishima Julie (57) for her own agenda.

The 250 or so janitorial workers are looking for a place where they can continue to ″show″ – and they are looking for a place where they can continue to work.

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Yuta Tamamori (33) of “Kis-My-Ft2” Tamamori canceled his attendance at the “Cartier” event after this situation. In the past, he has been an ambassador for the cosmetics brand Lancôme.
Ren Meguro (26) Meguro has had eight commercials cancelled, including those in which he appeared as part of the group. Meguro’s popularity has only increased since joining “Snow Man”.
Hideaki Takizawa, president of “TOBE” (right) and Ken Miyake enjoyed a 3-day/2-night trip to Okinawa this summer. Tucky’s hands were full of bags of Okinawan souvenirs.
Shiyoh Hirano on location in Tokyo during his time at Johnny’s. He had a stern expression on his face during filming (’22).
Hiromitsu Kitayama enjoyed a good time at a bar in Sangenjaya, Tokyo, with his friends. His steps were light, but he kept looking around warily (’21).

From the October 6, 2023 issue of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO Yusuke Kondo Ichiro Takatsuka Shu Nishihara Ippei Hara Yusuke Kondo Takayuki Ogawauchi

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