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Actress Makiko Esumi announces retirement amid adultery speculation

Makiko Esumi (above) is retiring from the entertainment industry
Makiko Esumi (above on the cover of Glow) is retiring from the entertainment industry “for her children”

TOKYO (TR) –  Actress Makiko Esumi, 50, has announced that she is retiring from show business amid speculation that she is engaged in an extra-marital affair, reports Nikkan Sports (Jan. 23).

A statement sent by fax on Monday via a person representing Esumi, who has been married for more than a decade, indicated that she wishes to focus on raising her children. The message also denied the accuracy of a report scheduled to appear in a weekly magazine on Tuesday that claims she is seeing another man.

“This is not adultery,” the statement said, adding that a partner mentioned in the article is actually a business associate. “We are preparing take legal measures against this baseless coverage.”

The statement did indicate that Esumi and her husband are living apart, “but it is due to work and lifestyle reasons. There are no plans to divorce.”

The actress is likely best known for her role as an office lady in the “Shomuni” series that ran on Fuji TV in the late 1990s. She had a prominent role in “Pistol Opera,” a film by Seijun Suzuki released in 2001.

After Esumi married photographer Rowland Kirishima in 1996, they divorced following the emergence of reports that she engaged in an affair with an actor.

Esumi married director Shin Hirano in 2003. They have a boy and a girl.

While working, Esumi gave birth and began raising her children, the statement said in closing. For their well-being, she is setting her career aside after 30 years in the entertainment industry.

“She thinks that it is time to concentrate on choosing what she can only do for her children,” the message said.