The first time I saw this guy playing “Nanba sempai” — I always believed that there is something more to him than being the “actor who looks like Jun Matsumoto in some pictures” and the hunky lead in “Zettai Kareshi”
A graduate of the prestigious Keio University and naturally bilingual (having raised in Switzerland), Hiro was the kind of actor who looked so manly and intelligent without even trying.
He was also the kind of guy who loves surprises — that is he loved surprising the Japanese entertainment industry and his fans regarding his recent personal and professional undertakings.
In February 22, 2009 — he announced that he married Japanese popstar Ayaka after eight months of dating, unconsciously breaking thousands of fan girls’ hearts in the process. To this day, he remained a loving and supportive husband to his wife who is suffering from an illness called Graves’ Disease which attacks the immune system. (SOURCE)
In September of this year, he announced his departure from the Japanese entertainment scene to focus on his desire to be a writer. Apparently, he has always been interested in writing and has decided to consult his agency on this dream. (SOURCE)
In October of this year, Poplar (a popular publishing company in Japan) has announced that “Kagerou”, a novel submitted by a certain Saito Tomohiro has won the grand prize during the 5th Poplar Annual Awards for literature. The competition attracted more than a thousand entries where the novel–one that is about life–by the novice writer attracted the panel of judges and was chosen as the winner. The catch? Saito Tomohiro and Mizushima Hiro’s is one and the same, wherein the actor-model chose to submit his entry using his real name. During the awards ceremony, Hiro addressed his decision to leave acting and concentrate on writing. He also decided to DECLINE THE Y20 MILLION PRIZE MONEY, URGING THE ORGANIZERS TO USE IT TO FURTHER PROMOTE LITERATURE IN JAPAN. (OMG! Imagine passing up on a Y20M cash prize? It’s 10M pesos!!!) – Source
My God, this guy is in a different league altogether. Imagine choosing to say goodbye to the entertainment scene, the adoring eyes of the public to be a writer. I can tell you, a writer’s life is not easy! Especially for a fiction writer/novelist like Hiro (or should we call him Tomohiro Saito?) He is someone worth the adulation and the respect not only of his fans but also of people his age who sometimes don’t even know what they want in life. Here is a guy that is sure of what he wants and is willing to take risks for it. Fact is, he is really admirable. And while I was never his fan as an actor, I am now a fan — of Hiro, the person who is not only HOT but is also intelligent, determined and a risk taker.
I am looking forward to reading “Kagerou” on its first English translation (which I am sure Hiro can effortlessly do on his own).
Gambatte Kudasai, Hiro-san!