On February 15th, humanité Inc. announced that they have terminated their exclusive contract with actor Higashide Masahiro.
The agency reported the actor's contract was terminated on the 14th, explaining, "Ever since Higashide Masahiro's scandal two years ago, our company had made every effort to deal with various problems. Also, we had been searching for a path that would revive him as an actor."
They continued, "As he sincerely applied himself work after work, we believed that we would find a possibility of Higashide Masahiro's revival as an actor. Naturally, we believed that he was moving forward with the same mindset." However, they revealed, "Last fall, due to Higashide's thoughtless behavior, his road to revival was derailed. At that time, what we felt was not anger, but a sense of futility. After careful consideration, we reached the conclusion that we are no longer able to walk together with him."
They emphasized, "Once again, we looked back on each and every one of Higashide's works. Just as they are Higashide's treasures, they are important footprints to us. That is why this decision was a tough choice. Although his exclusive contract ends today, there are several unreleased works. We hope that Higashide Masahiro will review the things that are really important to him and start walking his road to revival."
In January of 2020, Higashide was reported to be involved in an affair with actress Karata Erika. Later in July, his divorce with his wife, actress Anne was settled. His first starring film in about three years was just released last October.