Miyuki Sugiura, the actress of “Janus no Kagami”, talks about money and love in her idol days…! | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Miyuki Sugiura, the actress of “Janus no Kagami”, talks about money and love in her idol days…!

A popular actress from the 1980s gives an honest 180-minute talk about her life in "Janus no Kagami" where she thought about fleeing the scene of the crime so many times that she once thought about jumping off a building due to extreme power harassment and lack of money.

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Miyuki Sugiura was born in Tokyo in 1969. She made her debut when a friend of hers applied for a job as a beautiful girl in the “Momoco” idol magazine.

I was suddenly chosen for the lead role, and the staff told me, ‘The ratings depend on you. To a 16-year-old high school student with no acting experience? Sure enough, I ended up moving like a puppet, and when I first saw my performance in the preview, I was horrified and cried, thinking, ‘Is this going to be shown on TV? I was horrified and cried.

Miyuki Sugiura (52) made her strong debut in “Janus no Kagami” (Fuji Television Network), which was aired from the end of 1985. Miyuki Sugiura, 52, made a brilliant debut in “Janus no Kagami” (Fuji TV), which was aired from the end of 1985. She took on the difficult role of a high school girl with multiple personalities who is usually an honor student but suddenly turns into a vicious delinquent.

It was produced by Daiei TV, and their dramas had a lot of exaggerated lines that we don’t use in our daily lives, so it was hard to remember them (laughs). (laughs) There were many scenes where I was chastised by my strict grandmother, and it was physically demanding. Kotoye Hatsui, a veteran actress, was able to do the scenes without any interruptions, but I couldn’t do the “painful face” act, so the director hit me with the script many times. So the director hit me with the script many times. When he hit me and I frowned, he said, “That’s it! (laughs). (laughs) That’s the kind of acting instruction that would be unthinkable nowadays.

Filming continued until dawn every day, with only two to three hours of sleep. Sugiura is said to have attempted to escape many times.

Sugiura repeatedly tried to escape. “It was tough,” she said. In the scene where I was thrown to the ground by Shinji Yamashita (69), who played the teacher, I was thrown 20 to 30 times, and I hit my neck on the concrete and fainted. I found myself on a hospital bed with three doctors playing rock-paper-scissors nearby. They were deciding who was going to take my X-rays. I’ll be naked when they take the X-rays (laughs). Even so, I was happy that I would be able to take a break from filming the drama, but they put a corset around my neck and sent me home. The doctor told me not to take off the corset for a month, but he took it off on the way home because he didn’t want me to get in trouble if I had an accident during filming. ……

Thanks to her hard work, the drama became a huge hit. Thanks to her hard work, the drama was a big hit and Sugiura quickly became one of the top stars.

I was often asked, ‘Janus Palace was built, wasn’t it? But I was paid on a monthly basis, not on commission. I was paid 50,000 yen a month, which was less than my friend who worked at McDonald’s, and I had to take the train to the site.

In January 1986, she made her debut as a singer, and the title of her first single was “Sadness.

The title of her first single was “Sadness,” and she said, “Why should I be sad for my debut song? (laughs) There were other candidates, and I recommended a song called ‘Nice to meet you,’ but it was a bad idea. But it was a bad idea. The staff said something like, “Songs recommended by singers don’t become hits,” and rejected it. Even so, the song went to No. 4 on the Oricon chart and won the Newcomer’s Award at the “Shine! Japan Record Award,” but I was not allowed to participate in the award race due to the office’s policy. The staff jokingly said, “This year’s Rookie of the Year is going to be ‘Masked Ball’ by ‘Shonentai’.

Although I couldn’t participate in the award race, I was able to appear on a singing program. On the set of “Janus,” there was a no-contact order that said, “The leading man must not talk to his co-stars. On the set of “Janus no Kagami,” I was ordered not to talk to my co-stars, but it was fun to talk to idols of my generation on a singing show,” Sugiura smiles.

Sugiura smiles, “During the show, male idols would give me notes with their phone numbers written on them. There were no cell phones in those days, so it was popular to meet up using a phone with an answering machine. We would share a PIN number and leave a message or check in from a pay phone at our destination. For dates, we would choose izakaya (Japanese-style pubs) or oden shops in Kanagawa or Saitama where local men were running their own businesses.

In “Whose Child Is This? (Fuji Broadcasting Corporation) with Kenichi Okamoto (52) of “Otoko Yobikumi,” she received a letter with a razor and a dead cockroach. Such was the era.

I was always conflicted. Idol is like a cake in a showcase. They are exposed to the gaze of many people and have no freedom. In your late teens, you want to be a little taller and wear darker clothes, but you are only allowed to wear pastel colors. Even though “Comme des Garçons” was popular, I always wore something like “Pink House. Yuki Sugiura is my real name, but the Yuki Sugiura that people know is a different person. I lost track of who I was and was mentally trapped. I can still say this, but there were times when I thought about jumping off a building.

At the age of 20, she decided to reset her life. At the age of 20, I decided to reset my life and quit the major agency I had been working for.

Nowadays, more and more idols leave their agencies or go independent, but at that time, it was a big deal in the entertainment industry. It didn’t go smoothly, but I was ready to retire and pushed through. My salary was still low and my life was still tight. At the end of the month, I always ran out of money for living expenses, and I couldn’t decide whether to buy coffee or rice balls. I was at my limit.

He left the entertainment industry for a time, but after a period of rest, he resumed his activities. Since the mid-1990s, she has been active as an MC and reporter for pachinko programs, and was once called “Pachidol. She is currently freelance and continues to work as a celebrity. In 2007, “Janus’ Mirror” was remade for the first time in 34 years, and Sugiura narrated the story.

There were times when I had a hard time, but now I’m really enjoying life. I had a tough time, but now I’m really enjoying my life. I can’t talk about my life, both public and private, without mentioning Janus. My only regret is that I could not play the role of the grandmother who chastises the heroine when the remake was decided. Wouldn’t it be interesting if I played the role of the grandmother? If I had gotten the information, I would have offered it to her.

This year, Sugiura was scheduled to hold an event to celebrate the 35th anniversary of her debut as a singer, but it was cancelled due to Covid-19. Even so, Sugiura is eager to do whatever she can, “It’s times like this that I want to do whatever I can.

If it’s people who bring people down, it’s people who bring people up. I’m over 50 years old, but I’m still good. I’m over 50 years old, but I’m still good, in fact, I’m just getting started! I think I’m just getting started. Gravure? There’s no demand for that (laughs).

Her catchphrase at the time of her debut was “Ah, the gaze. Her former innocence has disappeared, but she has regained her identity and her “gaze” is still shining.

In January 1986, the month she made her debut as a singer, she flew to a campaign by helicopter. Sugiura says, “I was just so passionate about my work.
Her popularity exploded with “Janus’ Mirror. She relieved the stress of her busy schedule by eating a lot of sweets, including Popolon.
A picture taken just after she quit a major agency. She says that the dog she started keeping at that time helped her a lot when she was on the edge mentally.
Currently, she actively participates in TV and talk events. Check out her official blog for the latest information.
Miyuki Sugiura talks about money and love as an idol and her transition to a pachidoll in 180 minutes
Miyuki Sugiura’s “Money and Love as an Idol, and Becoming a Pachidoll” (180 minutes)
Miyuki Sugiura’s “Money and Love as an Idol, and Becoming a Pachidoll”, a candid and heartfelt 180-minute interview.

From the December 10, 2021 issue of FRIDAY

  • Interview and text by Masao Kurihara

    Nonfiction writer

  • Photography You Ishii


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