Changes coming to AKB48, Akimoto Yasushi to kick 8 halfhearted members?
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A couple of girls inside mega group, AKB48 must have gotten quite a shock when producer Akimoto Yasushi announced after the final performance of their annual concert, "Request Hour Set List Best 100" that he is going to restore the member count to 48 girls.
Right now the group has a total of 56 members, which means that eight of them might be kicked out within the next couple of months. "I've heard about a lot of members that have a habit of being late and don't have the right attitude for being in this group." That's how Akimoto pretty much announced what kind of members he is going to aim for.
Tabloid "Shukan Bunshun" has asked around some insiders to learn more about the possible candidates. One of them said, "There will be those that will be kicked out because of their ill manners, but there are also a lot of members ready for a graduation."
It is even said that some of the girls collapsed soon after Akimoto made the announcement, knowing that they might be one of those halfhearted members. Meanwhile, those with endorsement deals, regular appearances on TV shows and sponsorships shouldn't really be too afraid of getting fired or pushed towards a sudden graduation. The insider continued, "The past graduation of popular member Ono Erena already resulted in various delays of DVDs and so on, so they won't make the same mistake again of letting an active member leave the group."
People from their staff also have their own opinions about who should get kicked out of the group, as an insider revealed, "The only person with the right to decide who is going to leave the group is Akimoto Yasushi. Those that didn't make it at the general election last year and those that only ranked at the bottom all have the same risk of getting sacked. Among us, the officials and the staff, members Masuda Yuka (25th) and Matsubara Natsumi (39th) are two of the top candidates. Also, when thinking about the timing of Akimoto's announcement, it is more than likely that he is going to announce the eight members that are going to leave at the Yokohama Arena concert in March."
That might have not been that surprising for you so far, but what is surprising is the fact that the winner and the runner-up of the AKB48 Janken Tournament might be strong candidates for Akimoto's letter of dismissal as well.
An official of AKB48 revealed, "Ishida Haruka (2nd) is known for her bad attitude and disliked by almost everyone in the staff. Everyone is in the same boat, but she is the one who always has to be diva-like and show her displeasure, create trouble for the staff and make petty complaints like: 'the dressing room is too small'. We've installed cameras in the dressing room for the DVD, but she never even thought about smiling for the camera. Instead she idled in front of her laptop and watched clips on 'Nico Nico Douga'. As for Uchida Mayumi (1st), there are various rumors about her excessive night amusements."
Akimoto regularly attends business meetings for all the shows and events his girls visit and speaks with the staff to find out about such things. The girls themselves should know the best whether the rumors about them are true or not, thus they should know what fate is going to await them. You can never work halfheartedly, not even - or especially not - when you're a member of AKB48.
Source: Shukan Bunshun, entame scoop
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