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From the pamphlet "The Making of Super Stars"
Original in Japanese
Translated into English by flowerbossa
A New BYJ, Only Brought Out by Leslie
“A lucky coincidence”, might be the most appropriate expression describing my encounter with Leslie. The shooting was not merely fun, but from the moment it began, the pure and innocent part hidden inside me seemed to be revealed…. I was able to be my natural self, and really enjoy the session. So, our first meeting left a strong impression, too. Leslie ran up to me the moment I stepped into the studio. Because it was so unexpected, I was a bit surprised, but I was able to sense how much he had been looking forward to this shooting, and moreover, feeling his passion and pure heart, I myself loosened up to him.
Normally, even for professionals, it often takes time to get used to each other’s tension in the first shooting. However, with Leslie, it was as if I was caught by his magic. How should I describe the expression of him looking into the lens…it was like that of a boy's, showing excitement over a big toy (laughs). After awhile, I found myself poising for him naturally, letting my own feelings and body lead me. Being with Leslie, I was returning to the child I had in me.
Actually, the session I had with Leslie took place after a long CM session, so I was quite tired out physically. But through the way he treated everyone in the same manner not creating any boundaries, the way he heightened the tension of the session as a professional, along with his motivation in bringing out a new dimension in me, he was able to bring out a masculine and sexy part of me which was something different from my past image. Recently, I have very strong thoughts on “my present self” and “my natural self” Needless to say, my past is important too, but each time I make an encounter with a new work, I face up to my new self, and little by little, I feel a change. In this sense, I hope I will be able to express my new self through my encounter with Leslie.
The Expressions of the Artists Collected Here Serves as a Tool for Thinking About Asia
The concept “ASIA IS ONE” that Leslie wanted to express through the “Super Stars” project is a fundamental one for me as well. Although the means of expression may differ – for me, through contents such as dramas and movies, and for Leslie through photography - we have connected with many countries of Asia. Perhaps that is why our meeting did not feel like a first, for we shared the same feeling of “ASIA IS ONE”. The reason I say this is because through you, my family (fans), I was actually able to feel “Asia becoming one”. I think that Asia is a community that can relate, help each other and develop together based on a cultural and emotional affinity. In Asia, there exist diverse cultures, languages, and customs and there are many parts which are different outwardly. However, every time I visit an Asian country outside my own, I feel “a spirit transcending language barriers”. Even when we are far apart, I am able to feel that we are one cultural community.
And in this project, I feel that the expressions of the artists that only Leslie was capable of bringing out will provide a new and wonderful tool to make one feel more familiar to Asia. It is a fact that when we receive love, we are all moved by this love. It is natural to share the love one receives and give something back in return, but in my position as an actor, the only thing I am able to do is present myself at my best in the works I appear in. This would lead to having you take interest in such matters as the world view of the work, the actors and staff who had created it, and the cultural roots of the work itself and of the people participating in the project, and this in turn should become a trigger for cultural exchange and mutual understanding. I also hope that every country of Asia will become capable of sharing a mind centering on culture rather than commercialism, so that even more exchange on an interactive level – not the exchange of merchandise such as movies and dramas as well as one way service – will be enhanced and also enable us to grow together.