Nearly a month after NHK's annual year-end program Kohaku Uta Gassen aired, the broadcast company continues to face criticism for deception surrounding Namie Amuro's appearance.
On January 5, the streaming service Hulu released another chapter of its documentary series giving a behind the scenes look into Namie Amuro's life. The episode featured footage from Amuro's time with Kohaku Uta Gassen.
NHK, a public broadcast company, was initially criticized for allowing one private media company access to its activities, but not others. NHK explained that its crew had filmed Amuro's time working on Kohaku as part of its efforts to document events to have on record for the future, and had provided that footage to Hulu for its documentary.
Hulu has gone on to state on multiple occasions that its own crew had shot the footage of Amuro used in its documentary. With Hulu contradicting NHK's own account, the broadcast company backed away from its initial claim, clarifying that a subsidiary of NHK outsourced the actual shooting of the footage to Hulu.
Due to the nature of the deal, Hulu was able to submit an application to use the footage before other companies, giving it an edge over other media outlets.
Critics of NHK's handling of Amuro's Kohaku performance claim that NHK was trying to hide preferential treatment of a private company in order to curry favor with the singer and ultimately get her on the program. NHK denies allegations that it used Hulu's exclusive ability to film Amuro as a bargaining chip.
This is the 2nd time NHK has attempted to lie about Amuro's Kohaku performance. The company had initially released photos of the singer it claimed were from her actual performance for Kohaku. It was later revealed through investigation that the photos was actually taken the day before during rehearsals.