Ninomiya Kazunari is the Highlight of Arashi
Translated by: sparkles_n15 @ asianfanatics.net
Ninomiya Kazunari is not only a member of Japanese boy band Arashi, but with his singing and acting talents exceeding those expected of an idol, along with his self-taught magic skills, Nino is truly a well-rounded artiste. Turning 30 this year and hosting his first individual show Nino-san on NTV this month, Nino is preparing to enter a new stage in his life.
Nino can clearly anticipate what the audience wants and doesn't waste a moment of their time. While his agency Johnny's Entertainment only produces idols, many of those under their management try to prove there's more to them than just their looks. Nino has received many prestigious awards, including an individual award from Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs. He also starred in the 2006 movie Letters from Iwo Jima, directed by Clint Eastwood. The director even redesigned the character for him. It's no surprise he's idolized by many of his juniors.
With regards to acting, Nino says he doesn't follow a special method. "I usually portray the role based on my first impression upon reading the script. I rarely look at the script again while on set. My acting is a combination of my own interpretation, as well as the opinions of the director and staff members. During filming I immerse myself into the character and follow the instructions from the director." In his new movie Platina Data, Nino's character has a split personality. However, he doesn't find it difficult to portray. "It's just like playing two characters. Of course expressing two different personalities at the same time can be difficult." Similar to his previous film Gantz, there are many action scenes in the new movie. However, Nino seems to handle them with ease. "I don't specially prepare for action scenes, nor do I undergo training. There are many professional action choreographers who work alongside the director to plan out the scenes in advance. Staff members will also test the shots to ensure the safety. What do I do? I just as do as they tell me on the day of shooting," he says casually.
Besides acting, Nino also plays many instruments such as guitar, bass, piano and drums, and also writes music and lyrics. He wrote Fight Song, which is a song that's sung at practically every Arashi concert, as well as his own solo songs. Nino admits that he doesn't know how to read music. He learned to play instruments based on his feelings and didn't study very hard, which is why he cannot sightread or play on the spot. "The first instrument I came across is bass. Later when I wanted to listen to the music I like, I learned guitar and songwriting. When I wanted to play different melodies I learned the piano. I learned drums to be able to arrange music and finally I bought myself musical equipment so I could record demos." Nino said that he has no pressure writing songs at the beginning because he only wanted to write the melodies he liked. "I only write songs when I'm free, kind of the same as playing video games on my day off. We're idols afterall, our work does't need to be as refined or complex. As long as my music expresses what I'm thinking then it's fine. Since Arashi's fans range from school kids to seniors, our songs don't need to be that deep. Rather, it's better that our songs are catchy so people will remember it after hearing it once."
In regards to marriage, Nino also has a carefree attitude and has no intentions of getting married. While he regularly fields questions from the media or from friends like 'what kind of girls do you like?' or 'when will you get married?', he says he only answers the questions to make others happy. Whether it's love or marriage, he has no preconceived expectations. "I think it's more interesting and more romantic when you have encounters with people you never expect to meet." Nino does his own household chores and says he is currently fulfilled with his life. As well, we can't forget there's four other members of Arashi he can lean on. Together for the last 15 years, they know what each other is thinking without having the need to verbally express it. Therefore, for those who wish to marry Nino, it's best if you initiate the proposal yourself.