Asako, a single Japanese mother wanted to avoid having her daughter made fun of by other children for not having a father, so she hired an actor to play her father.
She made the decision when her 10-year-old daughter started to withdraw and stopped talking to her. Bullying at school eventually led to Megumi not going to school and blaming herself for not having a father in her life.
That’s when Asako decided she needed to do something and remembered hearing about agencies that would rent actors to play family members. She auditioned five actors and eventually selected Mr. Takashi who is an actor and has played the roles of businessmen, friend, father and boyfriend for other jobs. Asako told Mr. Takashi the guidelines he needed to follow for this acting job, “My requests were very simple,” Asako said. “Firstly, I wanted him to say how sorry he was that he couldn’t be in Megumi’s life until then. Secondly, I wanted him to listen to whatever she wanted to tell him.”
Over time, Megumi became happier and Asako knew then that hiring an actor to play Megumi’s father had been worth it. Mr. Takashi has been playing the role of Megumi’s father for 10 years now and receives around $90 each time his acting services are required.
“I’m very aware that he’s only with us because we’re paying him,” Asako said. “I sort of fantasize about our relationship, that maybe we can be a real family, but the relationship as it is actually helps me emotionally and mentally as well. It keeps me stable.”
Asako hopes that Mr. Takashi’s role will be permanent and that he will hopefully continue his role as the father at Megumi’s wedding and potentially the role of a grandfather one day.
When Megumi eventually finds out the truth behind her hired actor father there won’t be an actor in the world that could fix the devastation that would surely follow.
Full story here:
Photo: Big Stock Photo