Johnny Kitagawa sexual assault scandal: J-pop agency to set up separate talent management unit


Johnny Kitagawa sexual assault scandal: J-pop agency to set up separate talent management unit

J-pop talent agency Johnny & Associates Inc. will spin off operations of its main company to establish a separate entity focusing on talent management, the Nikkei reported.

The Japanese, family-held firm will focus on compensation for hundreds of victims an investigation concluded were sexually abused by its late founder, Johnny Kitagawa, over more than four decades, Nikkei said on Saturday. The agency – whose name is better known than many of its individual stars – recently acknowledged it failed to stop Kitagawa’s serial sexual abuse.

The new company may be named based on suggestions from fans, the newspaper said.

A host of brands have already dropped the company’s stars in recent weeks over the abuse by Kitagawa, who had engineered the birth of J-pop mega-groups that amassed adoring fans across Asia before his death aged 87 in 2019.

‘They do not understand’: anger mounts against Japan sex predator’s talent firm

Japan’s national broadcaster NHK on Wednesday said it was cutting ties with the agency.

“We will suspend making new offers until we make sure that it is taking concrete steps to compensate the victims and taking prevention measures,” NHK’s president Nobuo Inaba said.

It means the agency’s top stars may not appear in NHK’s enormously popular annual music show on December 31, “Kohaku Uta Gassen”, watched by around a third of Japanese households.

Two of Japan’s top beer companies, Suntory Holdings Ltd. and Kirin Holdings Co., said last month they would cut commercial ties with the agency. Other brands including McDonald’s Japan and carmaker Nissan have also dissociated themselves from the agency.

Members of Johnny’s Sexual Assault Victims Association who claim to have been sexually abused by music impresario Johnny Kitagawa at a press conference on September 7, 2023. Photo: Reuters

Julie Keiko Fujishima, the founder’s niece, resigned in September following the investigation, which found Kitagawa’s abuse occurred between the early 1970s and mid-2010s.

Kitagawa brought popular boy bands including Hikaru Genji, SMAP, Arashi and Sexy Zone to prominence in the world’s second-biggest recorded music market and beyond.

Allegations about Kitagawa had circulated for decades but it took a BBC documentary this year to prompt soul-searching and a probe by an external panel which issued a damning report in August.


Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button