Uncertainty Looms Over Arashi Fan Club’s 120 Billion Yen Collection Amidst Jun Matsumoto’s Independent Report | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Uncertainty Looms Over Arashi Fan Club’s 120 Billion Yen Collection Amidst Jun Matsumoto’s Independent Report

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The future of the national idol group “Arashi” is still “unclear.” ……

It has been reported that Satoshi Ohno is taking a break from activities, Kazunari Ninomiya is going independent, and there are also plans for Jun Matsumoto to go independent. Will Arashi, who are approaching their mid-40s, really make a comeback?

“The March 14th issue of ‘Weekly Bunshun’ reported Matsumoto’s independence plan. It is said that he went to the office accompanied by a lawyer and discussions are being held. It seems that Matsumoto-san is saying, ‘The revival of Arashi is impossible,'” said a female magazine reporter.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Arashi’s formation, with expectations for a comeback in April at STARTO’s event and in November, the month of their formation, but it seems they are heading in the opposite direction of a comeback. Fans must be filled with disbelief regarding Matsumoto’s independence plan.

Fans eagerly awaiting even a one-night revival are still enrolled in Arashi’s fan club. The membership count is approximately 3 million, and the annual fee for the office’s family club is a uniform 4,000 yen. Despite not operating at all as a group, they still earn 12 billion yen annually.

“To put it crudely, is there any other ‘business’ in the world that provides such cost-effectiveness? Regardless of the members’ true feelings, just hinting at the group’s existence as ‘Arashi will not disband’ can earn them 12 billion yen annually.

Matsumoto has talent as an actor and producer, so if he goes independent, there will be plenty of opportunities for activities other than Arashi. Ohno is also expanding his business into resort business, and I’ve heard that he has frequently expressed his desire to quit since he was young. Do they really have any intention of making a comeback?” (Wide Show Desk)


As for Arashi’s fan club, there are some comments on social networking sites.

“My wife is still a member of the Arashi fan club, but I think it’s terrible that they keep billing her annual dues even though she doesn’t participate in any activities.” 

This statement has sparked questioning voices.

“I hope the Arashi fan club continues. It’s my favorite, and it holds many memories over the years. It would be sad to lose the 20-year journey if it disappears.”

There are also persistent voices from fans expressing this sentiment.

“When Arashi announced their hiatus, the fan club management revealed that they were considering the form of the fan club. Fans flooded in with comments like ‘Even during the hiatus, please continue the fan club!’ and ‘It’s an important place for fans,’ so it seems it has continued.

Moreover, in case they make a comeback, it’s almost impossible to get tickets without being a member of the fan club. Some fans even pay membership fees for multiple accounts under family or friends’ names to increase their chances during ticket lotteries. It seems they believe in the comeback, which is why they remain members. If the members have no intention of coming back, I think it’s necessary to make a clear announcement.” (Sports newspaper reporter)

From the members’ perspective, it’s a complex mix of not wanting to disappoint fans and the existence of what could be termed as vast unearned income.

  • PHOTO Shinji Hasuo

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