Popular voice actor Takahiro Sakurai, 48, who voiced Giyu Tomioka in Demon Slayer, has revealed that he was involved in an extramarital affair for 10 years. The lady in question, being termed "A-ko", was a part of Sakurai's radio show.
The voice actor had been married for 20 years and only revealed news of his extramarital affair in September 2022.
The news shocked the anime community and the world at large given the fact that Takahiro Sakurai managed to conceal the affair for such a long period.
Takahiro Sakurai ran a program “P.S. I’m Fine. Takahiro” (P.S.元気です。孝宏 P.S. Genki Desu. Takahiro). For nine years, he was a host on the radio show. However, on Monday, October 24, 2022, the show came to an abrupt end.
The tweet above reads:
"We apologize for the abrupt end of the program. It was thanks to everyone who supported us that we were able to continue the program for over 9 years. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all the staff and everyone involved. I’m really thankful to you."
A-ko was a broadcast writer on Sakurai's radio show. She claims to have only heard of his marriage just before the recording the final episode of the show. The news left her in shock as she retired from the writing business. Sources state that she had to be rushed to the hospital due to the shock.
Weekly Bunshun had staff approach Takahiro Sakurai on his way to work. In a follow-up article, he admitted to the deed but stated that he desired to speak more of it later.
Sakurai confirmed that he had been dating A-ko for 10 years and that she was not aware of his marriage. While dating, the pair even discussed marriage themselves.
The head of Takahiro Sakurai's affiliated agency, Intention, approached Weekly Bunshun shortly after on Sakurai's behalf. He stated that the affair had already concluded when Sakurai made his marriage public, and that the agency was unaware of his marital status until then. They also confirmed A-ko's retirement.
On the other end, there has been no statement from Takahiro Sakurai's wife yet. Sakurai had mentioned that he revealed the truth to his wife and the two were talking about the situation.
Takahiro Sakurai issues public apology
The agency posted Sakurai’s apology later on their website, which read:
"I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to everyone from the bottom of my heart for any inconvenience caused by my inappropriate behavior.
This incident is the result of my irresponsible behavior; my actions are in no way excusable, and I deeply regret that I betrayed everyone’s trust.
From now on, I will seriously reflect upon my behavior and make a sincere effort to regain the trust I’ve lost.
I’m truly sorry for what I’ve done."
Sakurai's spokesperson conveyed his apology regarding the situation. The aforementioned spokesperson had also not met with Takahiro Sakurai’s wife. However, they believe that Sakurai does feel guilty for what he did. He had repeatedly stated that he did not want to trouble A-ko with any further issues.
Takahiro Sakurai has been the voice behind Rohan Kishibe in Jojo's Bizarre Adventure and Griffith in Berserk. He was also the voice behind Giyu Tomioka in Demon Slayer, Suguru Geto in Jujutsu Kaisen, Sasori in Naruto, Avan in Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai, Reigen Arataka in Mob Psycho 100.
He has also voiced Cloud Strife in Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts, Suzaku Kururugi in Code Geass, Tentomon in Digimon, Dragon Shiryu in Saint Seiya, Meme Oshino in the Monogatari series, and many more.
At the moment, it is unclear where Sakurai is headed after the news. He is reprising his role as Reigen in the ongoing Mob Psycho 100 III anime and is also involved in others such as Blue Lock, Bleach: TYBW and Urusei Yatsura.
On a similar tangent, Tatsuhisa Suzuki went on hiatus when news of his affair leaked. When the news of Daisuke Namikawa’s affair was reported, however, he continued with his career.