It seems that Friday magazine is once again trying to dish the dirt about Kago Ai. The latest edition of the magazine which is notorious for outing idols in secret relationships with paparazzi photos to get them into into trouble with their management agency has a story of Kago finding romance with a 33 year old man, an actor called Hidejiro Mizumoto. They snapped her with him at a restaurant and going to his apartment. Both have been working on a new movie which comes out in the summer.
However, Kago has put the record straight in her blog by stating that the guy’s mother is a psychic and she’s been seeking her advice. When she isn’t available her son takes over so there isn’t any romance going on at all.
Last year Kago Ai went to Hong Kong to film a movie with the legendary Sammo Hung and now the trailer for the movie Kung Fu Chef is out. It’s a comedy martial arts movie which looks like fun so I’ll probably check it out when it’s released on DVD. It’s only near the end of the trailer that Kago appears although you can hear her voice, well I’m assuming it’s her childlike voice that’s throughout the trailer.
There’s quite a lot of debate in the blogging community about Kago Ai’s semi-nude photobook Adultism at the moment. I really don’t understand what the big deal is all about to be perfectly honest. Some fans are disgusted that she’s going down this route whilst other praise her for doing something different. As for myself, I think the shots are tastefully done and don’t degrade her in any way shape or form. She looks great in all of the pictures I’ve seen. Perhaps some people need to realise that this isn’t Aibon anymore. The image of a cute, funny, mischevious kid in Morning Musume is long gone, she’s now an adult so maybe this is a bit of a shock to some to her fans. It’s not like she’s going to delve straight into AV work because of it. At the end of the day, if you don’t like the pictures then don’t buy the photobook.
It seems that Kago Ai has revealed recently that she’s enrolled at an international school since April. Kago said she wanted to complete her high school education which is a wise decision on her behalf. You must remember that she’s been in the entertainment industry since she was 11 years old. Like many previous idols, the pressure of working and trying to do high school studies is hard so in most cases education gets the old heave-ho from them. Showbizness is fleeting for many of Japan’s idol stars who drop out once they reach their 20′s and go back to normality. Some have nothing to fall back on but in Kago’s case at least she’s thinking of her future which is never a bad thing.
The school she’s enrolled with (Aoyoma International Academy) is a branch of which the HQ is in Connecticut and Kago will be studying by correspondence for 2 years and should she complete everything she’ll have the equivalent of an American high school diploma. Apparently the online course she’s enrolled with is conducted entirely in English and Kago is having lessons in learning the language by a foreign teacher. That’s tough for somebody with a limited grasp of English but if she’s determined enough I can see her doing well.
Kago has hinted that she might try and enter university possibly in the US if she succeeds in completing the current course she’s on. I wish her the very best of luck with her studies and hope she passes with flying colors.
This weekend former Morning Musume and W idol Kago Ai visited the doctor after feeling unwell. His diagnosis suggested that Kago might well have Meniere’s disease which is a ear disorder. It causes dizziness, tinnutus and some hearing loss. It’s not a serious disease if she really has it but one former sports broadcaster had to quit in the 90′s because of it. It’s unfortunate if Kago has to eventually quit if the situation gets worse for her seeing that she’s got her life and career back on track again.
W - Kago & Tsuji (before her firing)
There was no one more devastated than me when Kago was fired by UFA in March 2007. I was in Tokyo at the time when I switched on the morning news on the TV and saw them talking about her with a sombre voice. I knew straight away that something bad had happened. Rushing to the nearest konbini near my hotel I grabbed a newspaper with her picture on the front page, went back to my hotel and asked the receptionist to translate what the headline said. When she said that Kago had been fired my face dropped like a stone and going online to verify the news just made it worse. Kago had been a firm favourite of mine since I became a fan of Hello Project. It was her antics with her partner in crime Tsuji that I really enjoyed the most - they were adoreable, funny and had those mischevious glints in their eyes. Any TV programme featuring those two would never be dull and I can’t imagine the difficulty that Mari Yaguchi had in trying to keep those two in check during their Mini Moni days!
When the first smoking scandal came out just before W’s third album was about to be released I thought she was careless in being caught by the scummy Friday magazine. Kago was suspended for a full year and when an announcement came out in early 2007 that plans for her comeback were in place and that she was working as a receptionist for UFA I really did think that she’d learned her lesson and had matured. The 12 months off and going back to her home in Nara had given her time to reflect on the stupid mistake and that she wouldn’t do anything dumb again after all UFA had given her a second chance of resurrecting her career. But what does she do? She gets reckless and is caught smoking yet again but even worse is going to a hot spring with a man in his 30′s. I didn’t blame UFA for firing her as they had no choice and she was setting a bad example to her juniors in Hello Project. Whilst I was extremely disappointed I was also angry that she’d blown this opportunity. I thought to myself this is it, I won’t see Kago again. Her career in showbiz is finally over.
Kago during her comeback interview with OhMyNews
The following months after her firing saw Kago leave Japan and live in Los Angeles with the man that she’d gone with to the hot spring. During her time there she met Winona Ryder who encouraged her to not give up and give it another shot in showbiz. Her first interview back in Japan was with OhMyNews and it was a frank and revealing one which gave us the full extent of the torment that Kago had been going through since being fired – cutting her wrists and contemplating suicide. Shortly after she started her own blog called Biscuit Club which became popular and then she got an acting job alongside the great Sammo Hung in the movie Kung Fu Chef. Things were looking up for her. In August her first book was released in which she talks to teenagers about what she’d been going through – thinking her experiences will help them should they be going through the same difficulties. This month sees the release of a DVD called Kago Channel in which she stops teenagers on the streets telling them to stop smoking. My first thoughts on this was it’s a bit tacky and hypocritical of her to do this but I understand now that it has good intentions. There is talk that she’ll be singing again soon on the big record label AVEX (it’s Avex that’s also releasing her DVD). Let’s hope that this illness won’t affect her quite so badly. This is one case where she’s plummeted right to the bottom and thanks to perserverance and a lot of apologies has fought her way back up the showbiz ladder. She seems settled now in her life and has definitely matured though she is prone to falling off the wagon as she’s admitted to taking a cigarette or two but that’s OK as she’s 20 so it’s not a crime anymore. I look forward to seeing as to what her future holds in showbiz.