Otaku USA Magazine
Johnny & Associates Talent Agency Responds to Abuse Accusations Against Founder

Just days after anime and video game composer Hidekazu Tanaka was found guilty of indecent acts, another big name in Japanese pop culture is dealing with a fallout over sexual assault accusations. This time around it has to do with Johnny Kitagawa, who was the founder and former president of the talent agency Johnny & Associates, an agency that works with boy bands and idols.

Kitagawa passed away in 2019 and was never formally charged with any sexual crimes during his life. But a number of people have come forward with sexual assault accusations, and it appears that Kitagawa may have used his power to keep this out of the news while he was alive. This year the BBC released a documentary about him and the sexual abuse claims titled Predator: The Secret Scandal of J-Pop.

Julie Keiko Fujishima, Kitagawa’s niece, is now the president of the company, and she put out the following statement:

“I am Julie Fujishima, the representative director and president of Johnny & Associates. I would like to take this moment to deeply apologize for the great turmoil that has been caused in relation to the issue of sexual assault by our company’s founder, Johnny Kitagawa.

Before anything else, I wish to offer our deep, deep apologies to those who have come forward with claims of abuse.

We would also like to sincerely apologize to fans and other related parties who we have disappointed and distressed.

This is terribly late in coming, but, following this message we will be responding in writing to questions we have received from various parties.”

She also said, “There are those who have come forward saying that such abuse took place before their very eyes, and we take these reports very, very seriously.”

She said that an anonymous victims hotline is being set up, that their management system is getting an overhaul, and that there will be more transparency in the future.

Source: SoraNews24


Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, plus its sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.