It has recently been revealed that the woman responsible for SMAP’s recent “public execution” was Mary Kitagawa (real name: Fujishima Mary Yasuko), otherwise known as the sister of Johnny Kitagawa, owner of Johnny’s network.
Mary Kitagawa (89) is the vice president of Johnny’s talent agency and the representative director of record label Johnny’s Entertainment. She has never exposed herself on TV but has great control behind the scenes. When Mori Katsuyuki left SMAP in 1996, Mary exerted thorough pressure on all media outlets to make sure that no images with Mori will be used, creating a false impression that SMAP had all along been a five-member group. It was also said that when Kimura revealed his intention to marry Kudo Shizuka, Mary was strongly against it and told him to give up on the child.
The highlight of the recent incident, Iijima Michi, SMAP’s manager-cum-company director was said to be the next president of the company. However, this angered Mary who insisted to have her daughter Fujishima Julie Keiko take over the throne. The rivalry got so huge, there formed the Iijima “clan” and the Julie “clan.”
Mary felt Iijima’s presence at the company is a bother and threw her out asking her to “take your SMAP with you and get out of here!” (news articles and reports below)
As mentioned in the previous post, SMAP then decided to go independent and leave with Iijima. The group had then been preparing under the radar. However, Kimura Takuya dropped out at the last minute and decided to remain at Johnny’s resulting in the incident becoming an act of SMAP’s inevitable disband. The remaining of the members had no choice but to stay and were made to apologize publicly which was deemed absolutely unnecessary. Little did the company expect, this humiliation angered the fans who couldn’t forgive Mary’s abuse of her powers, and not only did they start a petition to have her removed, they also protested in front of the agency and threatened to boycott sponsors of all Johnny’s members TV programs.
At 89, Mary might not have realized but her power abuse that probably worked in earlier times is no longer valid in today’s connected world.
Images taken from Netgeek