Legendary Japanese musician and first-time director YOSHIKI's cement handprints and footprints were unveiled at a special ceremony at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood on January 9th. YOSHIKI is the first Japanese artist to receive the rare honor from the Chinese Theatre since the tradition began nearly 100 years ago.
YOSHIKI was introduced by Matt Pinfield, distinguished radio host on KLOS-FM, L.A.'s top rock station, before his tablet was permanently placed in the theatre's forecourt at 6925 Hollywood Blvd.
YOSHIKI's cement prints were placed directly next to those of Kobe Bryant and Jennifer Aniston, in the same area of the courtyard as Tom Hanks, Kevin Costner, Johnny Depp, Robert de Niro, and Al Pacino.
Brett Fellman, TCL Chinese Theatre’s President of Film and Marketing, said, "We were so excited to do this special unveiling. There was a lot of anticipation for this event from the fans who visit our theatre daily from around the world. We expect this to be one of our most popular attractions."
Eager fans from around the globe lined up hours before sunrise to get a close view of the international superstar as he celebrated the historic event surrounded by friends and colleagues from the entertainment industry.
YOSHIKI's international popularity has exploded, and the musician was recently chosen by entertainment giant Sanrio to create the worldwide theme song for Hello Kitty's 50th anniversary celebration this year, which will be released this spring.
YOSHIKI is one of just over 300 artists in the nearly 100-year history of the iconic
Chinese Theatre to receive this prestigious honor. He was selected as "one of the most influential musicians and composers in Japanese history" and in recognition of his
achievements in music, fashion, and film over decades, as well as for his
continued philanthropic efforts.
Demand to see the legendary artist was so high that large black curtains were placed at the entrance to the forecourt to prevent crowds from disrupting traffic on Hollywood Boulevard.
YOSHIKI said, "I just had my directorial debut for the film called YOSHIKI: Under the Sky, which was just released a few months ago around the world. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to do that.
"Well, making a film could seem glamorous, but now having gone through every single part of the process, I respect more than ever all the people involved in making the film, and the incredible sacrifice that goes into it.
"Again, I’m so grateful to be given the opportunity to direct the film. And you know what? It’s kind of addictive. If I may say, my next documentary and narrative films might be on their way.
"Two months ago, I completed my classical world tour at venues including Royal Albert Hall in London, Carnegie Hall in New York, and Dolby Theatre here in Hollywood.
"During that world tour, I dedicated it to my loved ones passing. My mother, my father, and my dear band members Hide and Taiji.
"As soon as that tour was over, I got the news from Japan that one of my band members passed away.
"I still don’t know how to deal with these kinds of feelings or how to deal with this loss, as the son of my parents, and as the leader of the band X Japan, especially thinking about my fans. I don’t know how to deal with this pain.
"This year, on January first, came more sad news, a huge earthquake struck Japan. It hits me so hard. I’d like to share this moment with those who are mourning loved ones lost.
"If I may, I’d like to take the opportunity of this special event to give something back, as I’ve done before.
"Today I decided to donate my crystal piano and put it up for auction, with all proceeds going to the victims of the earthquake. As I donated and supported several times over the past decades.
"To be honest, it’s really hard to make it day by day. You may feel it in my handprints. Sometimes my hands feel very fragile, sometimes my hands feel very strong. So as my heart.
"I have been going through some kind of mental upheaval, but my fans have been supporting me and bringing me back to a positive place, so I’m still making it through every day.
"Let me talk one more time about my film YOSHIKI: Under the Sky. The title of the film means…even though the people closest to my heart went up to the sky, I am still here…we are still here…still living here, under the sky.
"I’m telling myself, we should live as much as we can. We should live for them.
"When you come here, place your hands on my handprints. You may notice they may not be that big. But small hands can do big things, make somebody’s dreams come true, and help to lift up people’s spirits in need.
"I hope that anyone who comes here can look down at these prints of all these amazing stars – and then look up to the sky – to find hope and inspiration, and your loved ones watching you from the sky.
Thank you for this beautiful moment. I love you all."
YOSHIKI – who just donated 10 million yen to support victims of the Noto Earthquake in Japan – also announced that he would donate his beloved crystal piano for auction, with all proceeds going to provide further support to the areas affected by the disaster.
The donation is scheduled to begin January 12 at 12:01am (Japan time) and end on January 16 at 11:59pm.
Due to the positive response to YOSHIKI's announcement, there was an instant surge in worldwide interest for the upcoming auction. However, Yahoo Auction requires that bidders be residents of Japan in order to control the collection of funds.
YOSHIKI's acclaimed directorial debut film YOSHIKI: Under the Sky will begin streaming in the U.S. through Magnolia Home Entertainment under their Magnet Label on TVOD in March 2024 and SVOD in May 2024 on Amazon Prime Video. International streaming details will be announced soon.
YOSHIKI: Under the Sky gathers an extraordinary collection of international artists for an emotional journey through the pain of losing loved ones and uniting globally through the healing power of music. Shot in Germany, Beijing, Tokyo, and LA, the film features interviews and performances from The Chainsmokers (USA), St. Vincent (USA), Scorpions (Germany), Sarah Brightman (UK), Nicole Scherzinger (USA), HYDE (Japan), SUGIZO (Japan), SixTONES (Japan), Jane Zhang (China), and Lindsey Stirling (USA), as it crosses international borders and celebrates an array of diverse voices coming together at a time of universal upheaval.
The film is produced by Emmy Award winner Sid Ganis (Iron Man, Akeelah and the Bee, The Making of Raiders of the Lost Ark), Emmy Award winner Mark Ritchie (Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé, The Big Steppers Tour: Live from Paris), along with consulting producer Stephen Kijak (We Are X, Stones in Exile, Scott Walker: 30 Century Man) and directed by YOSHIKI – composer, drummer, pianist, and leader of rock bands X JAPAN and THE LAST ROCKSTARS. The project is the artist’s first feature film as director and was conceived during the pandemic when musicians could not connect with their fans. YOSHIKI: Under the Sky premiered in New York, Tokyo, London, and Los Angeles, followed by showings in over 130 theaters in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.