Johnny Kitagawa dies at 87
NHK -- Jul 10
Johnny Kitagawa, the founder and president of major Japanese talent agency Johnny and Associates, has died at the age of 87.

Kitagawa died of a stroke on Tuesday at a hospital in Tokyo.

Kitagawa was born in Los Angeles in 1931 and spent his childhood moving between Japan and the United States.

He founded Johnny & Associates in 1962. The agency has produced many popular male groups such as SMAP, TOKIO, KinKi Kids, V6 and Arashi.

Kitagawa was also known as a music producer and theater director. He was the holder of Guinness World Records titles for the most No. 1 singles and the most concerts produced by an individual.

Kitagawa himself rarely appeared or spoke in media. But he accepted an NHK interview for a program broadcast in January 2018 on condition that he would not be filmed. He said in the program that he thought his role was to create shows that make the audience feel happy.

Media in Taiwan quickly reported Kitagawa's death, as male groups belonging to his agency have held concerts there.

A major newspaper, The Liberty Times, called Kitagawa "the godfather of Japanese idol groups," praising him for producing many pop groups, actors and other TV personalities.

多くの人気アイドルを育てたジャニーズ事務所の社長・ジャニー喜多川さんが9日、くも膜下出血のため都内の病院で亡くなりました。87歳でした。 ジャニーズ事務所によりますと、ジャニーさんは先月18日に自宅で体調の異変を訴えた後に意識を失い、救急搬送されました。入院中には、自身が育てたタレントたちが入れ代わり立ち代わり病室に面会に訪れていましたが、9日夕方にくも膜下出血のため亡くなりました。ジャニーさんはアメリカ・ロサンゼルス生まれで、ジャニーズ事務所を設立した後は歌って踊り、俳優や司会もこなす男性タレントを数多く育ててきました。通夜と告別式は所属タレントらで行う家族葬とし、後日にお別れの会を開くということです。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Oct 16
Authorities in Japan are still trying to get a handle on the extent of the damage after Typhoon Hagibis tore through the country. At least 74 people have been confirmed dead. (NHK)
Oct 16
NHK has learned that more than 13,000 homes were flooded due to Typhon Hagibis which swept across Japan. (NHK)
Oct 16
As a fuller picture of the damage from Typhoon Hagibis emerges, Japan faces weeks of delays in restoring some train service, but supply chains weathered the storm relatively well, attesting to the rise of disaster planning. (Nikkei)
Oct 16
Japan manages a rare feat for a developed country when it comes to feeding its children -- high scores for nutrition but very low obesity rates. One major key? School lunches. (Japan Today)
Oct 15
Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka rank among the world's best 10 large cities -- with the Japanese capital topping the list for a fourth successive year -- according to U.S. luxury and lifestyle travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler. (Japan Today)
Oct 14
A Tokyo Fire Department helicopter rescuing a 77-year-old woman in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture, who had been isolated because of flooding caused by Typhoon Hagibis, accidentally dropped her about 40 meters to the ground because her rescuers did not properly attach her to the rope when they were attempting to winch her to safety during the botched operation. (Japan Times)
Oct 14
Japan captain Michael Leitch said Sunday's historic win over Scotland at the Rugby World Cup was the Brave Blossoms' way of helping the nation in the aftermath of Typhoon Hagibis and thanking those that helped put the game on. (Kyodo)
Oct 14
Japan has canceled its first fleet review of the new Reiwa era as the Self-Defense Forces support areas of the country battered by Typhoon Hagibis. (Nikkei)
Oct 12
In the month of October Japan celebrates “Sports Day” which is the anniversary of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and a holiday to inspire exercise for all. Around this time, schools all over the country hold Sports Festivals where they take part in a variety of physical activities from dancing to relay races. (soranews24.com)
Oct 11
Rugby World Cup organizers announced Thursday that two crucial pool games scheduled to take place on Saturday have been canceled to avoid the impact of a massive super typhoon set to hit the country. (Japan Times)