Entertainer Kazunari Ninomiya Leaves Former Johnny’s & Associates, Goes Independent

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Former Johnny’s & Associates Inc.’s building

Actor Kazunari Ninomiya, 40, a member of the idol group Arashi, announced Tuesday that he will leave Smile-Up. Inc., which was recently renamed from Johnny & Associates Inc., the agency to which he belonged, and will work independently.

Arashi is on hiatus, but Ninomiya will join the group when it resumes activities in the future.

Ninomiya revealed that his work has been affected since September, when the agency acknowledged that the company’s founder, Johnny Kitagawa, had sexually abused agency entertainers.

“I will face my life one job at a time,” Ninomiya said in a statement.