Ken Shimura, a comic who was a fixture on Japanese tv for many years, died on Sunday night from the coronavirus, the Japanese media reported Monday. He was 70, and instantly earlier than his sickness had been set for his first starring position in a characteristic movie.
Shimura entered a Tokyo hospital on March 20 with fever and pneumonia and examined constructive for Covid-19 on March 23. He’s the primary distinguished Japanese leisure world determine to die of the virus.
Born Yasunori Shimura in Tokyo in 1950, Shimura joined the Drifters, a comedy band, in 1974. The Drifters have been already kings of Japanese tv for his or her highly-rated selection present “Hachijidayo Zeninshugo!” (“It’s eight O’clock, Let’s Get Collectively All people!”), however Shimura injected a youthful vitality and impudence that stored their recognition hovering.
A rubber-faced comedian who took inspiration from Jerry Lewis, Shimura was hardly refined – certainly one of his characters, a middle-aged pervert, wore a swan’s-head strap-on for laughs – however he easily survived the cancellation of the Drifters’ present in 1985 and the group’s subsequent break-up.
Earlier than he got here down with the virus, Shimura had been solid in his first-ever characteristic starring position within the Yoji Yamada comedy “God of Cinema.” He was additionally a daily on two community exhibits.
Excluding these instances on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, Japan has 1,884 confirmed cases of coronavirus, of which 1,408 stay energetic. It has recorded 52 deaths from the illness.
However with native infections now rising, the scenario is seen to be worsening. Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, who every week in the past postponed the Tokyo Olympic Video games till 2021, issued a dire warning over the weekend.
“If a sequence of uncontrollable infections happens, the speed of an infection may explode someplace,” Abe mentioned, and warned that the variety of instances may develop by greater than 30 occasions in simply two weeks. “Japan is barely holding up. Nonetheless, if we calm down our vigilance even slightly, it could not be shocking to see infections unfold out of the blue at any second. This shall be a protracted struggle.”