Special Interview] Saki Takaoka talks about her professional and personal life: “I don’t fall in love like I did when I was young anymore (laughs). | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Special Interview] Saki Takaoka talks about her professional and personal life: “I don’t fall in love like I did when I was young anymore (laughs).

Saki Takaoka, who has been active at the forefront of music ever since her debut in 1988, reveals that "it has been 35 years of constant worries. As she approaches a milestone year, she looks back on her career to date.

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From my point of view at the time of my debut, I think it’s amazing that I have been in this business for 35 years (laughs). (Laughs.) There was a time when I thought about quitting. I want to give myself a pat on the back for still being here.

Saki Takaoka, an actress with undiminished beauty, continues to be active at the forefront of the industry even at the age of 51.

Saki Takaoka / Born in 1972. Born in Kanagawa Prefecture. She has been active in music, releasing two albums since resuming her career, and her latest album “DECADE-Sings Cinematic-” will be released on January 31.

Takaoka made her debut as a singer in 1988 at the age of 15. The following year, she began her career as an actress. Five years later, at the age of 21, she appeared in the movie “Chushingura Gaiden Yotsuya Kaidan” and won many movie awards, including the Japan Academy Award for best leading actress. In 2001, she resumed her singing career. At the end of January this year, an album commemorating the 35th anniversary of her debut and the 10th anniversary of her resumption of her singing career will be released.

When interviewed to commemorate the memorial year, Takaoka opened her speech with the surprising words, “There was a time when I thought about quitting,” as she said at the beginning of the interview.

When I first started out as an actress, I thought many times, ‘I’m not cut out to be an actress. When I first started out as an actress, I thought many times, ‘Acting is not for me’ (laughs). It was by chance that I got into show business in the first place. I took ballet lessons until junior high school, and when I was thinking about how to raise money to study abroad, I found out about the “3rd Cinderella Contest,” an audition with a 5 million yen prize, so I entered without thinking twice. I entered the contest without thinking twice. I later found out that I was also going to make my debut as a singer and do a commercial as a side prize. But the atmosphere was such that I couldn’t refuse.

Takaoka entered the entertainment world unintentionally. Since then, he has often wondered about his career.

I wondered if this was what I wanted to do, and every time I finished a big job, I thought about retiring,” he says. I wanted to distance myself from the entertainment industry, so I went to London to study when I was 18. I made time to face myself, but I was called back to Japan after less than six months because I had a good job. I realized that I couldn’t escape the entertainment world (laughs).

However, this one call proved to be a turning point for Takaoka.

That call was for the movie “Chushingura Gaiden: Yotsuya Kwaidan,” directed by Kinji Fukasaku. The director was Kinji Fukasaku, and I learned about acting itself. Fukasaku told me, ‘Acting is fun, isn’t it? I thought I was getting a little recognition as an actress.

Until then, I had done many things, including singing and gravure, and I often wondered who I was. Then, I decided to try to figure out what I wanted to do. That is when I decided to focus solely on acting. However, it was about 10 years ago that I was able to confidently call myself an actress. So after that, I started taking on other jobs as a singer.

A Changed View of Life

In February of last year, she also started YouTube. When we asked him about his true feelings about being interviewed for this article, he revealed his own changes.

I think my way of thinking has changed from the past. If I had been younger, I might have avoided the FRIDAY interview from the outset. But, as with any media, there are people among the readers to whom I want to deliver my words. I realized that if that is the case, I don’t have to choose where I appear.

In her personal life, too, there was a big change: While struggling to raise her three children, her two sons, the oldest and the youngest, turned 20 years old one after the other. On her days off, she sometimes drinks with them.

On their days off, all they do is cleaning,” he says. I guess I’m a bit of an obsessive person, but when I get into something, I just do it all the time. I also take walks with my dogs, learn to play the guitar (……), and drink with my older son.

I also drink alcohol with my older son. My younger son doesn’t drink much, but when we go out to dinner together, he often offers to drive me. When I say, ‘I want to drink, so let’s take a cab,’ he gets angry and says, ‘What a waste. He is much more solid than I am.

Takaoka is known as a drinker, so when I ask him if he has had any recent drinking-related mishaps, he shrugs and says, “I won’t tell you that much. When asked about his future plans for love, he thought for a moment and then revealed his current feelings.

She said, “My children talk to me and take me out to dinner with them, and there’s nothing more I want than that. There are so many things that happen in a …… relationship between a man and a woman, aren’t there? If I had to say so, I would say that I would like to have a good partner, or if one appears, that would be fine, but I don’t want the kind of love I had in the past at all (laughs). I’m not rejecting it. It’s fine as long as it’s separate. But I don’t think I can think of actively seeking one at this point.

At present, he says, his family is more important than anything else. Finally, we asked him about his goals for his 50s.

What are your goals? I don’t have such grandiose goals. I would like to live honestly in accordance with what I want to do. It would be easier if I could rely on something without thinking for myself. I don’t care if it’s in show business or with a man. But I don’t want to live that way. I want to continue to stand on my own feet and live by myself.

Takaoka is leading a fulfilling life both publicly and privately. She will continue to move forward at her own pace.

Last year, he appeared in three dramas. This year, he is appearing in “The Judgement of Jeanne” (TV Tokyo) in the January season. She says acting is still fun for her.
Saki Takaoka talks about her work and personal life. “I don’t fall in love anymore like I did when I was younger (laughs).
Saki Takaoka talks about her “work and personal life” and “I don’t fall in love like I did when I was younger (laughs).
Saki Takaoka talks about her “work and personal life” and “I won’t fall in love like I did when I was younger (laughs).

From the February 2 and 9 , 2024 issues of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO Shinji Hamasaki

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