Actor/singer Yamashita Tomohisa (26) held a press conference on December 7th to commemorate the first day of shooting for his upcoming drama, “Saikou no Jinsei no Owarikata~Ending Planner~“. During the event, he opened up about his withdrawal from NEWS for the first time.
Yamashita stunned the J-Pop industry back in October when he announced that he would be departing from the group along with fellow member Nishikido Ryo.
The pop star revealed that although he did many solo activities while he was in the group, he started to think about going alone seriously during his solo Asia tour. “There were many things going on inside of me, and it made me think deeply as a 25 year old man,” he began.
He continued, “There was a difference between NEWS’ color and my color, and it was also difficult to juggle both the group and my personal activities, timewise. Life is just one time, so I wanted to tackle this challenge in going solo. You can’t do things all your way if you stay in a group, because it could cause trouble for other members; but if you are alone, you have to take all the responsibilities on your own, so you can try different things without worrying.”
Reportedly, he first discussed his withdrawal plans with NEWS back in June. “They told me ‘Let’s try each other’s best as good rivals’ in the end, and those word pushed my back.”
In J-Pop, Akanishi Jin established a major precedent when he withdrew from KAT-TUN back in July 2010, however, Yamashita decided not to ask his friend for advice. “I did not ask him for advice since I usually don’t talk to Akanishi about work,” he said.
So, what has Yamashita been up to since leaving NEWS? “I’ve started reading many books. I think I need to learn more things. Though I had depended on the members until now, all responsibilities fall on me from now on,” he said.
As for his future plans, Yamashita stated, “I would like to try many different [acting] roles even if it’s not the lead role, and of course I will continue my activities as a singer. I also want to cherish my time to communicate with fans at live concert after next year.”
Yamashita will start his full solo activities as an actor and as a singer starting next year. Meanwhile, his drama will begin airing on January 12th, 2012.