Hiroshi Fujioka’s Children Recall Growing Up With “Kamen Rider” Father
Hiroshi Fujioka (藤岡弘) portrayed the first Kamen Rider, Takeshi Hongo. During his 55 years of entertainment life, he hasn’t often spoken about his family. Suddenly during a show in September 2019, he appeared with his three children in a show.
Immediately after the show, netizens commented on the family, with the words “ikemen” and “kawaii” being used, especially on Twitter. In December, the father and his children also appeared on a TV Asahi show.
Fujioka’s eldest son, Maito, is 179 cm tall high school freshman. Amane, his middle child, is in her 2nd year of Junior High School. Mai, the youngest, is 11 years old and has been working as a model exclusively for the magazine Nico ☆ Petit.
The children recalled hiding their father’s identity and occupation as they grew up.
Hiding Fujioka’s On-Screen Identity
Maito said that it was hard to keep it hidden when other children asked about his dad’s occupation. Fujioka told him “Don’t say that your father is Hiroshi Fujioka.” Maito had to dodge the question when speaking with friends. He had to go to friends’ homes to play and couldn’t bring friends to his house.
Maito learned early why he had to hide his father’s identity. He would stand out and be judged as the child of Hiroshi Fujioka, and wouldn’t be able to leave freely.
Amane agreed. She couldn’t invite friends over because there were certificates and photos of Fujioka and Kamen Rider in the house.
Mai felt it was complicated. She was sad that their father never came to class to visit nor attended athletic meets. Mai’s friends also tried to find out about her father, until one day they asked: “Is your Dad an entertainer?” Rumors began to swirl.
Going out as a family was even harder. Amane walked away from their father. Fujioka is such a prominent figure that she felt self-conscious that he’d be seen as their family. Even though they attended movies together, they sat in separate seats away from each other and even entered restaurants separately.
Making the Fujioka Family Announcement in 2019
Finally, last year, Fujioka decided to make the announcement. They all discussed it as a family, but it was Amane who said “It’s a new era, Reiwa. Let’s take a new step towards 2020.” And Fujioka made the decision.
After the announcement was made, Amane’s friends were supportive.
Teachers even stumbled in class, remembering the original Kamen Rider, but Fujioka expected that response. The family was able to walk around freely and even eat at restaurants together.
Growing Up in the Fujioka Household
As a father, Maito commented that he wasn’t scary. His reasons for getting upset were normal, like when the family would cook together and the kids would get distracted. He would ask everyone to concentrate and take it seriously. Amane believed he was trying to advise more than he would get angry.
But the youngest, Mai, is pampered, even if she does something bad. She argued that wasn’t the case. Once she bought colorful candy and Fujioka asked her why she would buy something bad for one’s body. She ate it and encouraged him to try it, but he didn’t want it.
That’s because food is important to the Fujioka household, mentioned Maito. They cook at home as much as possible and consume a lot of vegetables.
Keeping the Children Protected
Since Fujioka is also an experienced martial artist, he also encouraged his children to be active. They also had to watch out for suspicious people, as their father told them to notice their surroundings.
In Junior High School, Maito recalled receiving a knife from his father. Fujioka told him to learn how to use it, but he taught Maito how to use it properly as a tool. Amane received a whistle in case she’s in trouble, and she says she always carries it when she’s outside, or around her neck when she goes abroad.
The Battle Over Smartphones
The children were asked about the biggest struggle in the household. Maito wanted a smartphone because his friends had one, but Fujioka said no because he was too young. When he went from elementary to Junior High school, he asked his mom to secretly buy him a phone instead. Amane asked around the same time but used the excuse that she needed it as a form of communication with her parents.
Mai is still young and didn’t ask for a while, but eventually asked her mom to buy her one recently. But, her call history is mostly calls from her father. Every 30 minutes, he will call asking where she is or how much longer until she reaches her destination. This is especially common if he’s away for business.
Amane went through a similar call experience. She recalled not being able to answer because she was at school studying. When she got home, he was upset he didn’t answer and was apologetic when he found out why.
Maito recalled getting into some trouble with his phone. During Winter vacation, he was playing mobile games. Fujioka told him to stop after an hour, but he refused, but couldn’t defeat his dad. Then he was shown a newspaper article about the dangers of playing games for too long. The next day, Maito was relieved because it was like nothing happened.
Overall, the children were happy and glad they were born into this household.
(The full interview was posted in Weekly Bunshun Digital.)
Article Sources Yahoo