|Native name 沢尻 エリカ|
|Name Erika Sawajiri|
|Born April 8, 1986 (age 29) (1986-04-08) Nerima, Tokyo, Japan|
Other names ErikaKaoru AmaneKacchan, Aachan
Years active 2001-2007, 2010–present
Agent Stardust Promotion (2001 - 09)Avex Group (2010 - present)
Spouse Tsuyoshi Takashiro (m. 2009–2013)
Parents Lila Sawajiri, Yoshikatsu Sawajiri
Awards Japan Academy Award for Newcomer of the Year, Japan Academy Prize for Popularity Award - Most Popular Actor
Record labels Sony Music Entertainment Japan, Studioseven Recordings
Movies and TV shows Helter Skelter, 1 Litre of Tears, Break Through!, Closed Diary, Shinjuku Swan
Similar People Tsuyoshi Takashiro, Nozomi Sasaki, Keiko Kitagawa, Nanao, Masami Nagasawa
Erika Sawajiri - Biography
Trailer "Neko Wa Daku Mono"
Erika Sawajiri (沢尻 エリカ, Sawajiri Erika, born April 8, 1986, in Nerima, Tokyo) is a Japanese actress, model and singer. She appeared in the non-fiction Japanese television drama 1 Litre of Tears, playing the role of a girl who suffered from the intractable disease spinocerebellar degeneration (SCD).
On September 10, 2010, it was announced that Sawajiri had signed with Avex label for talent management and music releases. She was previously managed by the Stardust Promotion talent agency until her contract was terminated in late 2009, and was affiliated with Sony Music Entertainment Japan for her early recording career, recording under the name Kaoru Amane and, later, simply Erika.
Erika was born in Nerima, Tokyo, to a Japanese father and an Algerian mother and is the youngest of three children. Her father owned sixteen racehorses, including Edonokoban (エドノコバン), giving Erika ample opportunities to engage in horseback riding as a child. Her father disappeared from home when Erika was 9 years old, returning when she was in her third year at junior high school, only to die from cancer that year. Her second eldest brother died in a traffic accident when she was in her first year at high school. Her eldest brother is a former actor. Her mother managed a Mediterranean restaurant that she sometimes worked at. The family is extremely close knit, and often used Erika's photoshoots and other work as an opportunity to travel together as a family.
In 1999, Sawajiri passed the Stardust audition after graduating from elementary school. She became part of the idol unit Angel Eyes and began modeling for junior fashion magazines such as CUTiE and Nicola. She later won the grand prize for the 2001 Seikore and became a regular on the BS news program Harajuku Launchers. In 2002, Sawajiri started her career in film as well as extending her modeling career as a gravure idol. Her first film was Mondai no nai Watashitachi.
She became one of Fuji TV's Visual Queens in 2002. On the NTV variety show The Yoru mo Hit Parade, she became a regular from April till late June, shortly after leaving the program for the CX news program Chou VIP Fortune no Tobira from mid-June till late August. In November, she was on the CBC variety show Bijou Dokyuu and TBS show B-1. She got her big break when she was cast in the TBS TV drama Hotman. Her most notable role was in 1 Litre of Tears in 2005 when she portrayed a girl with the degenerative disease spinocerebellar degeneration.
Sawajiri first started her music career under the name "Kaoru Amane", the name of her character in her last drama, the TV adaptation of A Song to the Sun (Taiyō no Uta). The single went into number 1 in its second and fourth week. It was certified Triple Platinum for cell phone downloads of 750,000. On July 16, 2007, Erika released her debut single under the name "Erika", "Free". The single was immediately ranked on its first day as number one on the Oricon Charts. "Free" was certified Platinum for cell phone downloads of 250,000. Oricon stated that she is the only artist in 39 years to get their first two single hit number one since Hiroko Yakushimaru in 1983.
Sawajiri and her mother both stated on separate occasions that she would return to Japan and make a comeback as soon as late summer 2009.
Sawajiri was originally scheduled to star in the live action film version of Space Battleship Yamato but was replaced by Meisa Kuroki.
At the movie premiere for Closed Note on September 29, 2007, Sawajiri responded in a terse manner to reporters' questions. After much criticism in the Japanese press, she posted an apology on her website. A few days later she appeared on a TV Asahi's morning news show Super Morning, and gave them an exclusive 120-minute interview. She also denied the rumors that she was being suspended by her management.
She had planned to attend the 12th Pusan International Film Festival on October 6, 2007, but she cancelled. It was later discovered that she had been seen in a club with Tsuyoshi Takashiro, a man 22 years her senior. Sawajiri returned to Japan on March 29, 2008 after nearly three months in London with Takashiro. While in London, Sawajiri attended a language school. Her familiarity with English became evident at the airport when several cosmetics items fell out of her bag, and she exclaimed, "Oh shit!" She continued to mostly use English while at the airport, and she reportedly has become fluent enough to handle ordinary conversation.
In September 2009, the Japanese media started releasing reports that her management company, Stardust Promotions, would void her contract for undisclosed reasons. Her personal website became devoid of all content save one cryptic line: "See you at the next stage." Sawajiri's mother denied that termination of her contract was the result of substance abuse by Erika.
On September 1, 2010, in an interview on CNNGo.com, she said that her apology after the 2007 movie premiere incident was a mistake. She didn't want to apologize but her management at that time forced her to apologize; "I told them 'this is my way'... but in the end I surrendered. That was my mistake." Sawajiri believes that the agencies that are forcing too much from their idols are too old fashioned and that "The managers themselves are old but we have to change this situation."
On January 20, 2009, Sawajiri married media creator Tsuyoshi Takashiro at Meiji Shrine in Yoyogi. The pair registered their marriage on January 7, an auspicious day according to the six-day rokuyo calendar. But on December 28, 2013, at the press conference, they officially divorced after their divorce posted on their websites. She is considered one of the most beautiful women in Japan.