Singer Takahashi Yuya (28) was released on bail yesterday after 40 days in police detention. The second son of actress Mita Yoshiko (66), he was arrested in mid-November for possession and use of amphetamines. He was released by the Tokyo District Court on ¥5 million bail and on the condition that he immediately check into a rehabilitation center for treatment of his drug addiction and depression. He will remain there until his first court hearing scheduled for January 28. He had nothing to say to the media as he was driven away from the courthouse yesterday afternoon. This is his third arrest on drug charges: he first fell foul of the law in 1998, and again in 2000, when he received a two-year prison sentence suspended for five years.
• Oh Rie (37) held a press conference yesterday to talk about her postponed wedding plans. The daughter of baseball legend Oh Sadaharu (67) and psychiatrist Honda Masaki (37) had been scheduled to register their marriage – Oh’s third and Honda’s second – on January 1. Both that and a wedding ceremony planned for later in January have been postponed indefinitely. Some have speculated that Oh may want to focus on next year’s baseball season, said to be her father’s last as manager of the Softbank Hawks. Another factor is no doubt a recent magazine report that Honda had been sued for sexual harassment. Oh said yesterday that wasn’t the specific reason for the change of heart but admitted that she told Honda she wanted to postpone the marriage immediately after reading the article on the airplane as they returned from a recent holiday. She added that, in spite of some “small things” that needed to be fixed, she and Honda still have an ongoing relationship.
• Someone else not having a happy Christmas was comedian Taka (31) of the duo Taka and Toshi. He called in to a live late-night Fuji TV variety show hosted by Akashiya Sanma (52) on Christmas Eve to say that he had been dumped by his girlfriend of eight years. He ironically won a trip for two to Paris and said that he wanted to get back together and use the prize as a honeymoon. A big reason for the split is no doubt the photos that were published in a weekly magazine back in August of Taka and reporter Suzuki Natsuko (30) at a hotel.
• Fukuchi Shigeo (73), a consultant and former CEO at Asahi Beer, has been chosen as the next chairman of NHK. It’s the first time since 1989 that someone has been chosen from outside the national public broadcast network. Ten of the twelve members of the management committee chose Fukuchi, while two echoed the opposition voiced by some NHK employees and other business executives. Fukuchi will start his 3-year term from January 25.