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SMAP to disband (UPDATED)

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Earlier in the year, when news hit that SMAP were on the verge of breaking up, many fans were relieved that they weren’t.

But Johnny’s Agency has now confirmed that the group will be breaking up with their final day on New Year’s Eve. According to the statement from their agency, “Some members have expressed their wish to disband, rather than to suspend activities as SMAP.  It was a very difficult decision, but we have judged it would be difficult for (SMAP) to continue their activities as a group, although it was not a unanimous choice by the members.”

There are no details if there will be a farewell concert or farewell “SMAP x SMAP” episode.  But judging by the comments by each of the members, the group are not on the same page and have no choice but to break up.

Kimura Takuya has released the statement, “In regards to us breaking up, I honestly have nothing but regret. But a 25th anniversary live and group activities just can’t happen if all of us are not on the same page, so I have no choice but to accept this situation. Despite all of the support from all of our fans and staff, we’ve come to a pathetic resolution like “disbanding.” I can’t really find the right words to say right now.”

Nakai Masahiro released the following statement, “Dear fans and everyone involved with SMAP, I am informing you that SMAP will be disbanding. We’ve caused a lot of trouble, we’ve made you all worry, and you’ve supported us for so long. Please forgive us for ending up with this result. We are truly… Very sorry.”

Inagaki Goro released the following statement, “To all of our fans and all of our staff, I apologize for making you all worry. We thought it would be hard for the five of us to continue together in this situation, so we’ve come to the very painful decision to disband. We ask you to please understand our decision. Thank you very much for the last 28 years.”

Kusanagi Tsuyoshi released the following statement, “SMAP has chosen the path to disband. To all of the fans who cheered us on and all of the staff who have supported us the last 28 years, thank you. We’re still going to diligently continue on, so if you could continue to kindly look over us, it would make me very happy.”

Katori Shingo released the following statement, “To all of our fans and all of our staff, we, SMAP, are going to disband. I thank all of those who have supported us from the bottom of my heart. And I am deeply sorry for the very sudden announcement.”

Translation by Michelle Tymon, J!-ENT

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