SMAP leader Masahiro Nakai is known to be the busiest of the group, but his new shows may have boosted his salary to almost 700 million yen (about US$9 million), reports Tokyo Sports and Johnny’s Watcher.
It had been estimated Nakai had earned 500 million yen in 2009, but this year the Johnny’s talent has worked on drama series ATARU and been the main reporter for the London Olympics. On top of this, he has been given two new regular shows this year, プラチナイト (Platinight), which started in April, and ナカイの窓 (Nakai no Mado), which starts in October.
“That means Nakai now has nine regular shows, and if you include TV specials then it goes into double figures. That’s why they’re saying he’ll make 700 million yen this year with all his TV shows and commercials,” one source said.
To make a rough calculation of how much work that is, from March to August this year Nakai has been in:
52 shows for TBS, totaling about 99 hours
74 shows for Fuji TV, totaling about 78 hours
51 shows for Nihon TV, totaling about 44 hours
28 shows for TV Asahi, totaling about 29 hours
1 show for NHK, totaling 2 hours
It has been reported most of Nakai’s shows are variety shows, and there is a reason why the SMAP leader is such a popular pick.
“Of course Nakai is a talented host, but what many people don’t know is that he takes part in meetings where shows are being planned out. He has a good eye for telling what ideas would be good, and which ones should be thrown out. Variety shows don’t get high ratings just because Nakai is in it, it’s because he only chooses shows which are likely to get high ratings. As a result he’s become a popular figure in variety shows, he constantly gets more offers, and his pockets get filled with more gold. You’ve got to admit it, he’s got talent,” one TV writer said.