27 June 2011

Morimoto Ryutaro caught in underage smoking scandal

News has broken that Morimoto Ryutaro has been caught in an underage smoking scandal. A magazine printed photos that clearly showed him smoking when he was 15 and 14 years old.

Johnny's has made an official announcement on the matter stating that Ryutaro confirmed he smoked from time to time in the past. Because it accounts for breaking the law as he is now on indefinite hiatus from working in the entertainment industry.

Arama round up of reports. (English)

It is uncertain how this will affect him and Hey! Say! JUMP in the long term.

Honestly I just feel disappointed. I had thought that HSJ had a good chance of going scandal free for underage smoking/drinking with half of the group of legal age for those things now and the rest not too far behind. And I really can't imagine HSJ not being ten members but I can't see Ryutaro being able to get away with this without having to face some severe repercussions.


There's some new news about Ryutaro's punishment. According to Tokyo Graph's article a couple of things that will occur is that he's getting edited out of the covers of the new single (I'm assuming this must mean for any further printings of it as I got my notification of my order being sent out yesterday from CDJapan) and that he will not be a part of SUMMARY.

Tokyo Graph article. (English)


Anonymous said...

People are already comparing their situation to NewS. It's sad but I think HSJ will carry on as normal. Mori wasn't one of the front men so they won't be impacted that way. I'm going to think positive and believe he'll return to them at some point as long as no one else randomly gets in trouble within the group.

Jackie said...

I was so shocked when I read that.
Even if I´m not a Jump fan, I like this group a lot and was following all their activities. This week was so exciting because of their release and now this . He is out of Jump / entertainment activities.
I expected kinda like this to happen since JE is always harsh when it comes to underage break-rule things, but their statement came so quickly.
I really don´t want to imagine how Ryutaro feels, jump members, and all their fans. What horrible news.
How does JE plan Jump to continue?
I hope nothing won´t happen as it happened with NEWS.

But, why does the press come out suddenly with those older photos?? Why now, just before their single release? Is there someone who wants to do bad things to them?
Hopefully the scandal won´t affect their sales in a bad way.
Ryutaro, jump and fans: please be strong!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Ryutaro is 16, so many teenagers do stupid mistakes and this is quite "normal" when they go through puberty.
BUT !!!! Ryutaro definitely KNOWS all rules of the agency, he knows what happened to Uchi+kusano, and somehow I´m so angry at him !!
He even POSED for the camera while smoking. Omg, Ryutaro , baka !!!
Did he ever think about his consequences ???
And not only his, but what about all the other members? He´s absolutely affecting them as well.
I´m so afraid what Johnny is going to do with HSJ now! If anything should happen to the group like breaking up or making a break for many years, I will never forgive Ryutaro !!!!
Ahhh, I´m so angry right now !!!!!!

Thennary Nak said...

@ Anonymous #1

I wouldn't go that far yet. With NEWS they had two members get in trouble which is why they ended up with a group suspension, while only Uchi was in trouble they still more or less went on as usual which is probably what's going to happen with HSJ.

From the updated news I'm not sure if he has great chances to return. I mean they're going to take him off of a single cover already and it wasn't as if he was one of the more popular members, which is probably why Uchi got his second chance eventually.

@ Jackie

I was shocked at first but went to disappointed and haven't really moved on from there.

From the most recent news HSJ will just go on as 9 members. They don't seem to be getting punished with him which was pretty much the same with NEWS when Uchi had his scandal until Kusano had his and that's when things went sour for all of them. Though come to think of it Uchi's scandal happened before a SUMMARY as well as the last SUMMARY NEWS did was as a 7 member group.

I think it's because HSJ was getting some attention, as most scandals get printed around something that a group is doing, like releasing a new CD. It does seem really cruel but in the end no one forced Ryutaro to smoke or have someone take photos of him doing so.

@ Anonymous #2

Not only with NEWS but idols in general get in trouble for such things often enough he should have known better than to have done something like this, let alone having someone take photos of him doing so.

HSJ looks like they'll be fine overall. I'm sure losing a member will shake them up a bit though and I can already picture a lot of forced smiles while they're promoting this week. But Johnny's has announced that they'll be doing SUMMARY as 9 members so they'll just continue on.

I think I feel the worst for Shintaro, as he was promoted so much with his brother and now he'll probably have to pretend that he doesn't exist anymore when he's in front of fans now. That will have to be so hard for him to do.

Ani2 said...

Ryutaro did a stupid mistake and hopefully, he learned from it. We don´t know if we will ever see Ryutaro again, or hear something from him.
Well, it´s really sad but I wish people will support him, even just with feelings.
But I think most important now is to keep on supporting JUMP, even if they continue as 9.
I believe even though Rutaro is gone, it won´t affect the group too much when it comes to popularity. He was always one of those 3 members who got the least screeningtime. Obviously that Johnny´s didn´t favourite him a lot. But on the other hand, I don´t know about how much fans he had either.
As you Thennary Nak responded to Anonymous #2, I worry about Shintaro too. Not only has he to pretend from now on, that he doesn´t have a brother but people may see him as the little bro of Morimoto who got suspended.
And I hate comments about Shintaro or Nakayama Yuma replacing Ryutaro´s place. Those boy have nothing to do with this scandal !
And there´s no way anyone can replace Ryutaro.

Anonymous said...

I already see it coming: Johnny will use this case to let NYC become much more active. Doesn´t he want to push those 3 anyway?

As for Ryutaro, I wonder if he has to change school too? Because right now he´s in the celebrtity class at Horikoshi.

And imagine, would it be Yamada who would have caught. Johnnys would never suspend him, I believe. He´s so popular and JUMP would be nothing without him. Johnys would do anything to let him stay somehow. But Ryutaro......
Johnnys don´t care much about him.
But what a hard time for Ryutaro now, I don´t want to be Ryutaro for now. And JUMP members have to act in front of camera as if nothing happened.
Hope KARA won´t beat them today.

Thennary Nak said...

@ Ani2
I think supporting the group is definitely what fans should do. There's little else we can do in this matter honestly other than wait to hear what happens next. And I know I'm going to want to show support for Shintaro now as he has to be going through a rough time right now too.

Even if Johnny's does something like put another member in the group I don't think they would really be a replacement. People can't be replaced and it would be just as unfair to the new member as it would be to Ryutaro to view him as such. Though I think overall it's a long shot to think someone will be added to the group as I don't believe that's ever happened with a Johnny's group.

@ Anonymous #3

Looking at the sales for Over I don't think it may be too much of an issue. We may be seeing NYC again before we do HSJ but I think Johnny's won't stop supporting HSJ as they have because of this if the single ends up being their best selling single, which it very may well be.

I wouldn't be surprised if he has to switch schools as I believe Japanese schools are pretty strict about breaking the law, especially if the have a reputation to uphold. But I would wait for official confirmation on that.

If Yamada was caught with that kind of evidence we would most likely be suspended as well. He's not that popular yet and if anything his chances of staying in his groups would be pretty high, unlike Ryutaro who seems to have a rather low chance of coming back.