Posts Tagged ‘interview’

Toma Ikuta’s gardening hobby

14:21 JST August 29, 2012 2 comments

Plants help Johnny’s actor Toma Ikuta relax, the talent said in an interview with FINEBOYS, reports Johnny’s Kenkyukai on August 19.


In the September issue, the talent talked about his time working on upcoming movie 脳男 (Nou-otoko), where he plays a cold-hearted killing machine.  It has been reported Ikuta had been training hard for the movie’s action scenes for more than six months.  But the hardest part of filming has been showing the right emotion while doing nothing.

“It’s not all to do with my acting, there are other things like how the lighting makes my eye glimmer, and how the camera works to create a perception of the Nou-otoko.  I feel like the production crew are helping me the most.  I’ve always thought that it’s true, but I really think that creating a character is a team effort.   I can’t do it by myself.”


So, after a hard day’s work, one would expect Ikuta to chill out by listening to music, but the actor said there is something else that makes him relax.

“One of the best thing’s is getting home and watching over my house plant.  Feeding it water, watching the leaves gradually get greener, and then it makes me smile when I see a new leaf come out.”


The FINEBOYS interview also quizzed Ikuta on his own fashion trends.  It has been reported Ikuta has been a fan of simple styles like T-shirts, black caps, and turquoise and silver accessories.

“I’ve got a lot of rock concert T-shirts.  I’ll go to my favourite band’s concerts and buy T-shirts there.

“I buy bracelets and necklaces, but I always forget to put them on before leaving the house (laughs).  I’ve been trying to fix this by putting all of my accessories and watches beside where I keep my keys so I can put them on as I leave the house.”


It has also been reported Ikuta is a backpack fan too.

“Once you start using backpacks you can’t stop because they make things so much more easier.”

Categories: Toma Ikuta Tags: ,

Taisuke Fujigaya on Beginners!

11:27 JST July 31, 2012 Leave a comment

Interview with Kis-My-Ft2’s Taisuke Fujigaya in Yomiuri Shimbun, published on July 30.


It must have been a long wait, but the 25-year-old Kis-My-Ft2 group member is in the middle of playing his first lead in a drama series.  He was a late bloomer for a Johnny’s talent, but that has not changed his attitude.

“I always wanted to try a lead role.  How different is it.  There’s so much I want to learn,” Fujigaya said.


Fujigaya’s character in Beginners! wants become a police officer because his father was one.  The Johnny’s talent said he brings things about his own relationship with his father into his character.

“My parents have done so much for me.  My dad’s a quiet person, but when I was going through a tough time thinking about my future, he was there for me.  I was so happy when he came to my concert.”


Q&A with questions sent in by fans:

Q: How do you remember you lines?

A: When I’m at home, usually in the bath.  I’ll imagine the scene and take my time going over lines.

Q: What kind of character would you like to try?

A: Something like 10 episodes of the love story from the first episode.  I want to try so many characters.

Q: What job would you be doing if you weren’t doing this one?

A: I love kids so I might’ve become a kindergarten teacher or a worker at Disneyland.

Q: What’s the best thing a fan has told you?

A: Things like, “you gave me support”, or, “you gave me motivation”.  Knowing that what we do makes someone happy makes me happy too.

On location with Ryo Nishikido for his first drama lead (translation)

01:10 JST March 23, 2011 2 comments


28/03/2011, No12-1582

Shooting for Ryo Nishikido’s upcoming drama has started!  “I’m bribing (the dog) with treats”!?

Q: Filming has started!  How do you feel?

N(ishikido): Well, to start with the weather’s really nice so thank god for that (laughs).  My scenes with the dog have gone quite smoothly and the director’s here giving me instructions so I feel really comfortable.  That’s why I want to work as hard as I can from now on and hopefully make this a truly amazing drama.

Q: Did you do anything in particular last night to prepare yourself for today’s first shoot?

N: Not really, but I didn’t go out for drinks last night.  I knew I had to be in early today so I made sure I wouldn’t be late (laughs).

Q: What do you think of Kokoro-chan? (Nishikido’s on-screen daughter Mako, played by Kokoro Kuge)

N: She’s cute.

Q: How does it feel playing a father character?

N: It’s…well, I hope to experience more of it from now on.

Q: What did you think when you first heard you’d be playing a father?

N: I wasn’t really…what’s the word, it’s a character unlike any other I’ve played so I saw it as another job.

Q: Did you ever talk it over with the director about what kind of man Yuji is?

N: No, we haven’t talked about anything like that.  But while we were getting the costume clothes together I got told, “Yuji’s been through this and that”, so I interpreted that myself, I read books, and I delivered my lines.  When we finished rehearsals today the director told me, “it’s just getting the eyes right now”, so I want to work harder at that.  But I hope that by the end I’ll find that not a lot has changed.

Q: What do you think of the drama’s theme “family rebuilding”?

N: Well… I’m not sure how we’re going to fall apart (as a family) yet.  I don’t even know what’s going to happen.  But I hope people can get a feel for things in the first episode.  I’m looking forward to seeing how the characters get back on their feet.

Q: The drama’s setting is around the currently-under-development Sky Tree.  Have you ever seen it?

N: No, not from right below.  Sometimes while I’m driving on the expressway I’ll look at it like when I see Mt Fuji and go, “oh, there it is”.

Q: So your shoot here today is the first time you’ve seen it from below?

N: Yes.

Q: You get along well with the dog Sky Tree (played by ダイヤ (Daiya, Diamond)).

N: We’ve worked together twice already for photoshoots and stuff.  It’s not our first time together so we’ve gotten quite used to one another.

Q: How did you become such good friends?

N: I’ve been giving bribe treats as much as possible (laughs).  I know the more time we spend together the better, but right now in the (drama) family I’m the favourite!  That and I’m just the one who’s been giving the most treats. (laughs)

Q: You’ve been giving that many treats? (laughs)

N: Well, here and there, and there and there…

Producer: You’ve been giving treats behind our backs haven’t you.

N: Yes. (laughs)

Q: Hiding them in your pockets then?

N: That’s right.  Now my suit pockets are full with bread crumbs.

Q: (laughs)  Have you ever had a dog?

N: Yes, I’ve had a pet dog.

Q: How is life different when someone has a pet dog?

N: Well…there have been times when I’ve come home from work and found poo everywhere (laughs).  But then I feel guilty because I guess the dog’s been under stress.  They’re cute when they sleep too.  I dunno…they make you feel more alive than when you’re by yourself.  They do get on your nerves sometimes though (laughs).  But then again, that’s my fault for not training my dog properly.  But what is it, I don’t mind it at all when my dog licks me when we’re sleeping together.  They make your feelings go up and down.

Q: So having a dog makes you nicer?

N: No, I wouldn’t say I’ve become that open. (laughs)

Q: Then does it make you want to do something nice for people?

N: (laughs) Ummm, well, I guess I think so.  It does make me think I have to do better.  When you’re by yourself, the only person to bear the consequences of your mistakes is yourself, but when you’ve got a dog, you feel like you need to get your act together.

Jin Akanishi Press conference (translation)

02:50 JST February 24, 2011 10 comments


28/02/2011, No8-1578

Q: I would like to ask you, Akanishi-kun, to make the announcement.

Akanishi: My first single to be released in the US has been decided.

Q: You look like the President today.

Akanishi: Yeah, isn’t it amazing!

Q: It is amazing.  Were you the stage director today, Akanishi-san?

Akanishi: No (laughs).  Um, they were the ones who got it together for me.  It…feels good.

Q: (laughs)  Surely you must be having some sentimental feelings about your first single, but you’ve also been able to meet a very special person, is that right.

Akanishi: Ohh, yes.  I’m hoping to release an album by autumn though.  But while I was choosing songs for it, the guys at Warner gave me a demo song to listen to, and we talked about it, and chose Jason Derulo’s song.  Then he said he liked it after listening to a recording.

Q: What’s the song like?

Akanishi: We’re still making it and I think there’ll be a few changes on the way so I can’t say too much…but it’s probably going to be a pop song.  I’m working with a producer called J.R. Rotem at the moment too.

Q: So it is a collaboration.

Akanishi: It’ll be a collaboration between Jason Derulo and me.

Q: I understand your dreams are coming true one at a time now, but did you ever imagine it going this smoothly?

Akanishi: I feel like I’ve been working towards this, or that I happened to end up here.

Q: Is it beginning to be all you had hoped for?

Akanishi: I want to work in places all across the world so I feel like I’m taking the first step.

Q: Your first step.

Akanishi: My first step.

Q: What did you think of Jason’s work?  He’s amazing isn’t he.

Akanishi: I didn’t know he was 21, I thought he was older than me so when I heard he was 21 I was like, “what!”.  And he was a nice guy in person too so…it was a double surprise for me (laughs).

Q: No third surprise?

Akanishi: I think my third surprise is coming soon.

Q: Did you get along with him?

Akanishi: It was okay.  We talked about things.

Q: I’ve noticed everyone is “J” something.

Akanishi: J.R. Rotem, Jason, Jin…oh right.

Q: And Johnny-san.

Akanishi: Oh yeah, and Johnny-san.  That’s right.

Q: You went on exchange for six months but were you able to learn a lot of English?

Akanishi: The same as everybody else I think.

Q: How did you study?

Akanishi: Talk.  As much as possible!  And ask when I didn’t get something.

Q: What’s your advice when it comes to studying.

Akanishi: Ehhh!  You’re asking the wrong person.  I’m the one who’d like to know if there’s a good way of studying.

Q: Where will be your home now?

Akanishi: I’m not sure at all.  My schedule gets planned at short notice.  But I’d like to stay at the place where I’m working, and then go home to Japan…something like that.

Q: So you will work in Japan too.

Akanishi: Japan is my foundation so, yes.

Q: Now, Kis-My-Ft2 who used to be back dancers for KAT-TUN just got news about their debut…

Akanishi: Ooh!  I heard about that.  I heard about it!!  I heard about it just before.

Q: They got told during their concert yesterday, but what did you think?

Akanishi: Oh yes.  We were just talking about how good it was.

Q: If you could say something?

Akanishi: I’ve got nothing to say (laughs).

Q: Whereas KAT-TUN took five years (from their formation) to debut, Kis-My-Ft2 took seven.  It’s the longest period a group’s been in Jr. before their debut.

Akanishi: Oh, the number of years they were in Jr.  Ohhhhh.  (extended silence)  What!?

Q: (laughs)  But being in Jr. for five years must’ve been tough.

Akanishi: I mean, we never thought of things like that…like debuting.

Q: If you could send them a congratulations message.

Akanishi: Congratulations…actually, I think I’ll call Kitayama since I know him quite well.  I happened to talk to him yesterday but he didn’t mention anything about it.  Then I heard about the news before and I was like, “whaaat”.  Oh, wait, it wasn’t yesterday, it was the day before yesterday.

Q: They got given an envelope on stage that had a letter inside saying they were going to debut.  Apparently they had no idea until that moment.

Akanishi: That’s Johnny’s entertainment for you (laughs).

Q: Who do you want to thank right now?

Akanishi: Everyone.  Of course my fans, staff, family, friends.  Everyone.

Q: Can you send them all a message, please.

Akanishi: Ummm, please continue to support me in the future!

Q: …isn’t there something else you should be announcing?  Are you alright?

Akanishi: Oh, yes yes yes!  My DVD! …will be released on May 4th, “Yellow Gold Tour” will be available on DVD so please check it out.  Could you squeeze that in, please.  Just so it comes right in after the message to my fans part.  Cut out the stuff in between.

Q: No, we’ll put all of it in (laughs)

Akanishi: (laughs) Okay, thank you very much.

Kis-My-Ft2 Press conference (translation)

01:48 JST February 24, 2011 8 comments

The press conference held minutes before their debut news present


28/02/2011, No 8-1578

Q: So now that you’re about to do your last concert of this tour, how have you found the fans in the crowd throughout your Nagoya, Osaka, and Tokyo concerts?

Fujigaya: I think because we’ve been working on a drama, people seem to notice us more, and there seem to be some new fans.  I can really feel their energy.

Q: We’ve noticed some fans have made fan signs with the names of your drama (美咲ナンバーワン!! (Misaki Number One!!)) characters written on them.

Kitayama: Ohh.

Fujigaya: That makes me really happy.

Q: Speaking of dramas, we’ve noticed that your song is being used in the opening credits.

Kitayama: That’s right!  “NO.1 ~FIRE BEAT” has some slightly odd lyrics, but when I first heard it in the intro I just went, “Wow”.  I remember the first time I sang it, I got so excited.

Q: Have the other members seen your drama?

Tamamori: I’ve seen it!  I recorded it during one of our concerts.  I had no idea how they were going to use it, but when I heard it on “Misaki Number One!!” I was like, “wow!”.

Q: What did you think of their bad boy image?

Tamamori: It was like a breath of fresh air.  The two of them aren’t usually like that so.

Q: So they’re usually good boys?

Fujigaya: Of course we’re good boys!  (Looking at Tamamori) Tell them!

Tamamori: Well, I never imagined them like that so, it was something different.

Q: Tamamori-kun, you got ahead first by playing a bad boy in the drama “ごくせん (Gokusen)” right?

Tamamori: That’s right.  People said they didn’t see me [as the bad boy type] either.

Q: How about the rest of you?  Are you all kind boys?

Kitayama: Do I have to say this myself?  Of course we’re kind (embarrassed laugh).

Fujigaya: But I do remember when I went through a rebellious stage during junior high and high school.  I remember going against adults back then.

Kitayama: I had a rebellious stage too, but now I’ve become a more well-rounded human being (laughs).

Q: I remember when your costumes had a more wild taste to them, but today you look very refined.  Ties and all (laughs).

Fujigaya: Don’t you think they look like proper suits.  We put a lot of work into making sure we go the right costume designs.

Q: Have they been designed so you can move your legs around easily?

Fujigaya: Yes.  It’s so that we can skate smoothly.

Kitayama: Our strokes are really long in Yoyogi (Tokyo) so we have to make sure the seven of us are spinning around in time.  If we get lost in the moment then the whole formation goes “arrrrgh” (laughs).

Q: The one to worry about the most would be…Miyata-kun?  Have you gotten used to roller skating now?

Miyata: I…well, somewhat.  I try my best.

Fujigaya: Miyata-kun always does his best (laughs).

Q: How about Senga-kun?  Is there anything you’d like to say you were a part of?

Senga: I was in charge of choreographing routines to a lot of the new songs we had this time.

Q: And Yokoo-kun?

Yokoo: Skating is our trademark.  We weren’t able to do it in Nagoya or Osaka, but in Yoyogi we’ve been able to use skating banks so I’ve been using it to my advantage to do lots of tricks, like jumping with Nikaido.

Q: Watching you all perform, it’s easy to tell your skills have gotten better.

Kitayama: Yes.  With every concert we get a better idea of what we want to achieve.

Q: (Like 滝沢革命 (Takizawa Revolution)) is a Kitayama Revolution underway soon?

Kitayama: (laughs) Yes, I do hope to start a revolution soon.

Q: Don’t you think there’s a possibility?  How about your group’s dream to make you debut this year.

Kitayama: I do hope we can.

Q: Do you think the time is right?

Kitayama: They’ve let us work on a drama……

Fujigaya: It is important to us.  I want (to debut)!

Q: Do you feel you fans anticipating it too?

Kitayama: I really feel like I’ve come this far walking side-by-side with our fans so one day….I hope this year, sometime soon.  So, I do (want to debut)!

Q: You all want to debut?

Fujigaya: We talk about it when we’ve got free time (laughs).

Masaki Aiba surprised his little brother is getting married before him (interview translation)

22:45 JST January 19, 2011 7 comments

While memories of taking on the host role of last year’s Kohaku are still fresh in their minds, Arashi have already established a solid popularity and there is no doubt they will continue to be a big success this year.  In amidst it all, we caught up with Masaki Aiba, the calm one.  Here we’ll let you have a small peek at the interview.


Aiba-san says his family is his rock.

“I’ll call them up a lot to ask, ‘do you want to go out for dinner?’, and we’ll go out as a family.  My family runs a Chinese restaurant and the other day they asked me, ‘what should we put on the new menu’ (laughs).  How am I supposed to know.

“Just recently, my little brother surprised me by saying he was going to get married.  I’d met his girlfriend a number of times, and she’s had dinner with us, but, I can’t help but feel that he beat me to it really easily (laughs).”


Having just turned 28 himself, Aiba-san contined to tell us about his reaction.

“I’d always felt that marriage was something still way down the line, but now it feels quite close,” he said.


So what kind of woman would he want to marry himself?

“I’d rather be with a woman who is straightforward and puts her best effort into everything than someone who’s always formal.  It would be great if we could encourage each other for the better.”


You seem like you’d look after a girl, but what if you abandoned her to hang out with your guy friends!?

“No, of course not.  I’d even bring her along when we play baseball.  I’d be like, ‘you, be our manager’.  I’d make sure that we can enjoy things together!!”


Perhaps the force behind Aiba-san’s unlimited energy isn’t just his fellow Arashi members or fans, but also his family…


* Source: BAILA magazine, February 2011 edition

Ryuhei Maruyama wants to confidently say he’s a pop star (translation)

22:03 JST January 12, 2011 Leave a comment

週刊朝日 Asahi Weekly magazine

January 21 2011 edition

Ryuhei Maruyama (Kanjani8) faces a new challenge with his upcoming stage play “Gilbert Grape”,  the world’s first stage adaptation of the novel, which has already been turned into a movie starring Johnny Depp.

“I want to be able to say, ‘I’m a pop star!’ with pride.”

“I always wanted to have more work so I’m having a lot of fun right now.  I get excited every day trying to guess what I’m going to do next.”

Maruyama is part of the seven-member group Kanjani8 who have just gone around the country on their concert tour, he’s been working on his TV drama, and he’s begun preparing for his upcoming stage play of Gilbert Grape.

When we asked him whether this was the busiest he’s ever been since making his debut, the star put on a huge smile.

“But wouldn’t you be happy if your schedule was full up?”

In his band, Maruyama plays bass guitar, but when he had joined his agency he was a guitarist.

“(My agency’s president) Johnny-san told me, ‘you’re big so you should play bass’.  And this is a world where if you don’t do what you’re told, you won’t survive….(My drama co-star) Daisuke Shima-san told me, ‘it must be hard being a pop star today because no one accepts you unless you’re real’.”

While the star constantly smiles and brightens up the room, Maruyama said he does not do it alone.

“It’s because the people around me create that kind of environment.”

The Johnny’s star also talked about the challenges facing him today.

“With plays it’s important to make your dialogue and your movements convey your emotions.  It’s the same with dancing and instruments, it’s not fun unless you’re trying to get something across to people.  My future ambitions?  I want to do as many plays and TV shows and sing songs and dance.  When someone asks me, ‘is this what a pop star does?’, I want to be able to say, ‘of course, I’m a pop star!’ with pride (laughs).”

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