I was working for a large, old and famous talent agency last year in Tokyo. My contract with them ended last month, and I decided for a lot of reasons that I didn't want to work for them anymore so I didn't renew my contract with them.
While I was with them, I appeared in recreation dramas, daytime call-in shows, specials, print ads and even was on stage in a touring opera. Every month I had some kind of issue with them about money, whether it wasn't getting paid the promised amount, having to do more than what was agreed upon for the amount of money or not getting paid at all.
For one job I did last year, they asked me to do a two-day photoshoot for a fee that was really low considering the big Japanese electronics company it was for. They said the photos were only going to be run in the in-store catalogues in the company's retail outlets in Europe and possible on the sides of buses, also only in Europe. "They aren't going to be used in Japan, that's why the job is so cheap", they said.
I went for a walk last night on my way home from having a few drinks at the Foreign Press Club. My walk took me through Ginza, an upscale shopping in district in Tokyo famous for the brands it attracts. My face is on the side of building.
MY FACE IS ON THE SIDE OF A F**CKING BUILDING!
Those bastards. The photo is from that "Europe only" shoot. I have already had calls, "Oh, you're so famous! You must be rich! Haha! You should buy us dinner."
Yeah, haha. "It should feel good to have my face on a building", I think.
The only time I ever got paid for a re-run of a drama I was in was when I happened to see it on TV and called my agency about it. "Oh, yeah. Uh, forgot about that."
You can see my face on a building from an airplane landing in Tokyo. Did they forget about that, too?!
If only I hadn't cancelled my contract with them...