The “unique sensibility” that Hiroko Yakushimaru showed at the time of her debut in NHK Kohaku’s “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun”. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The “unique sensibility” that Hiroko Yakushimaru showed at the time of her debut in NHK Kohaku’s “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun”.

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Hiroko Yakushimaru performs “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun” at the NHK Kohaku Uta Gassen

Hiroko Yakushimaru sang “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun” at the 74th NHK Kohaku Uta Gassen, a special program for the 70th anniversary of TV broadcasting, showing that her clear voice is still alive and well.

The song was the theme song of the Kadokawa movie “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun” starring Yakushimaru, which was released in 1981 and became a big hit along with the movie. In the scene where the machine gun is fired wildly, the song says


became a popular phrase, making Yakushimaru a national idol.

When she was 14 years old and in her first year of junior high school, Yakushimaru won an audition for the role of Yoriko Nagai in the Kadokawa film “Wild Shining” (’78), starring Ken Takakura, and made her film debut. She emerged like a rising star and became a top idol.

Ken was asked about his impression of Yoriko Yakushimaru, who played the role of Yoriko, who was adopted by Ajisawa, a former special agent in the Self-Defense Forces, whom he played,

If she were my real daughter, I’d be working hard. “If she were my real daughter, I would be working hard, even two jobs a month.

If she were my real daughter, I would be working hard.

In 1980, she played the leading role in Shinji Somai’s “The Flying Couple” for the first time. The following year, in 1981, she starred in “Sailor Suit and Machine Gun,” again directed by Somai.

Since then, she has continued to establish herself as an actress, winning Blue Ribbon Awards for Best Actress for “Detective Story” (’83), “Satomi Hakkenden” (’83), “Main Theme” (’84), and “The Tragedy of W”.

In March ’81, when she starred in the movie “The Targeted School” (directed by Yoshihiko Obayashi), in which she played a heroine with hidden supernatural powers, I once interviewed her at Toho Studio in Kinuta, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo. Yakushimaru, then a second-year high school student and a national idol, had an aura that brightened everyone around him.

It was his second film in which he starred, following “The Flying Couple.

In “The Flying Couple,” it was difficult for me to play the role because it seemed to happen so close to my own life. This time, I played the role of a girl with psychic powers, so I had to make it seem like I had psychic powers. It is much more difficult to play an everyday life, isn’t it?

I was impressed that she also talked about her “theory of acting. And about psychic powers

I have seen UFOs. When spoon bending was popular, I tried my best to do it. (Laughs) That’s about all I know, but I think I have intuition.

(laugh) I think I have intuition. I can tell what people are thinking. At my age, I really feel like I have a sixth sense.

He showed his unique sensibility.

In October 1980, Momoe Yamaguchi married Tomokazu Miura and retired.

Momoe was talented and worked very hard to get that far, and I don’t have anything like that, and I am embarrassed to be compared to her.

I have nothing like that, and I am ashamed to be compared.

At the time, she focused on her schoolwork and worked during her breaks.

I would go to class, eat ramen noodles with friends on the way home, and then have some shiratama zenzai (bean-jamen soup with white beans) (laughs). I think it’s important to go home, watch TV, and have a life like that at …….

In addition to his excellent acting and singing skills, his way of thinking about the importance of the roots of his own life became the source of his continued success as a top star.

His background as an idol born from Kadokawa Pictures, which created a whirlwind in the movie industry with its successful media mix collaboration between Kadokawa Bunko and movies, also contributed to Yakushimaru’s popularity with a new sensibility and individuality different from that of top idols such as Momoe Yamaguchi, Seiko Matsuda, and Akina Nakamori.

She won the Blue Ribbon Award for Best Actress for her role in “The Tragedy of W” (1984). She established herself as an actress by winning the Best Supporting Actress Award at the 29th Japan Academy Prize for “Always: Sunset on Third Street” (2005).

After closing last year’s Kohaku with a performance in Kohaku, Yakushimaru will release her first original new album in six years, “Tree,” on January 24, 2012, and we can expect to see more of her.

  • Writer Ryo Sakamoto (Writer, former head of the Culture and Society Department of Tokyo Sports Newspaper)

    Writes articles on entertainment, movies, Hollywood information, etc., including the web magazine "PlusαToday". Member of the Japan Film Pen Club

    A member of the Japan Film Pen Club

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