King & Prince is a five-member Japanese idol group under Johnny & Associates that debuted in 2018. The group was originally a +more'>Johnny's Jr. unit, Mr. King vs Mr. Prince that was composed of 2 separate units: Mr. King and Prince. The units later performed as one group for TV Asahi's Roppongi Hills Natsu Matsuri Summer Station in June 2015. Their debut was announced at a press conference on 17 January 2018 along with the establishment of Johnny & Associates' new record label under Universal Music, Johnny's Universe, with King & Prince becoming the first artists to sign under the label. They have sold 8. 1 million physical copies in Japan.
The group used to have six members: Sho Hirano, Ren Nagase, Kaito Takahashi, Yuta Kishi, Yuta Jinguji and Genki Iwahashi. However, Genki Iwahashi withdrew from King & Prince and Johnny & Associates on 31 March 2021 due to anxiety disorder.
Johnny & Associates announced the group's formation in a press conference on 5 June 2015. The group was formed to be special supporters for TV Asahi's Summer Station event. +more Mr. King vs Mr. Prince was divided into two subgroups: "Mr. King", consisting of Sho Hirano, Ren Nagase, and Kaito Takahashi and "Mr. Prince", consisting of Yuta Kishi, Yuta Jinguji, and Genki Iwahashi. Producer Johnny Kitagawa chose their name in hopes that each member would "spark off each other" and "improve themselves through friendly rivalry". The group's first original song, "Summer Station" was used as the official theme song for the Summer Station event, which ran from July to August 2015. The group was meant to disband after the event. However, in August 2015, the members announced that they would continue activities as a group.
By 2016, Mr. Prince had changed their name to "Prince" and the six members predominately worked within their respective units. +more Mr. King released a photo book and were special supporters for Summer Station 2016, while Prince performed in the Johnny's Ginza musical and started to host their own variety show, Mayonaka no Prince. In September 2017, the six members performed in the Johnny's Jr. concert Summer Sta (Kimi ga) King's Treasure. After the concert, they asked Johnny Kitagawa to let them debut together.
2018-present: Debut and success
On 17 January 2018, their debut was announced in a press conference, along with the establishment of Johnny & Associates' new record label under Universal Music, Johnny's Universe, with King & Prince becoming the first artists to sign under the label. Their debut single "Cinderella Girl" was released on 23 May 2018. +more It was used as the theme song for the drama Boys Over Flowers Season 2 which stars member Sho Hirano. "Cinderella Girl" was a commercial success; it sold over 577,000 copies in its first week, making it the first debut single in over 12 years to exceed initial sales of 500,000 copies. This also made it the most commercially successful debut of the decade. By late June King & Prince had become the highest earning new artist, with a total gross of ¥870,000,000. In September 2018, "Cinderella Girl" was certified 3× Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) for shipments of 750,000 units.
Following the success of "Cinderella Girl", King & Prince embarked on a nationwide arena tour titled King & Prince First Concert Tour 2018. The tour began in August at the Yokohama Arena with a sold-out show to 15,000 guests. +more When the tour concluded, the audience totaled about 260,000 fans. On 10 October 2018, King & Prince released their second single titled "Memorial". The single was used as the theme song for the television drama Bukatsu, Suki Janakya Dame Desu ka? starring members Kaito Takahashi, Yuta Jinguji, and Genki Iwahashi. Another song included in the single, "High On Love", was used as the theme song for the film You, I Love which stars member Hirano. "Memorial" sold more than 400,000 copies in its first week, and topped the Oricon Singles Chart. In the same month of release, it was certified 2× Platinum by the RIAJ for shipments of 500,000 units.
In November 2018, Genki Iwahashi went on hiatus indefinitely to concentrate on treatment for his panic disorder. The group's management announced in February 2019 that he would rejoin the group and participate on their third single, "Kimi wo Matteru", but in March it was noted that he was to continue receiving treatment. +more On March 31, 2021, Genki Iwahashi officially left King & Prince and retired from the entertainment industry.
|King & Prince||Released: 19 June 2019 (JPN) * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: CD/Blu-ray, CD/DVD, CD||1|
|L&||Released: 2 September 2020 (JPN) * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: CD/DVD, CD||1|
|Re:Sense||Released: 21 July 2021 (JPN) * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: CD/DVD, CD||1|
|Made In||Released: 29 June 2022 (JPN) * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: CD, CD/DVD||1|
|"-" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.||"-" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory. +more||"-" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.|
|JPN DVD||JPN BD|
|King & Prince First Concert Tour 2018||Released: 12 December 2018 * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: DVD, Blu-ray|
|King & Prince Concert Tour 2019||Released: 15 January 2020 * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: DVD, Blu-ray|
|King & Prince Concert Tour 2020 ~L&~||Released: 24 February 2021 * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: DVD, Blu-ray|
|King & Prince CONCERT TOUR 2021 ～Re:Sense～||Released: 12 January 2022 * Label: Johnny's Universe * Formats: DVD, Blu-ray|
|JPN||JPN Hot||TWN EA|
|"Kimi o Matteru"||2019||1|
|"Koi Furu Tsukiyo ni Kimi Omou"||2021||1|
|"Odoruyō ni Jinsei o"||2022||1|
|"Summer Station" (サ||2015||Mr. King vs. +more Mr. Prince|
|"Bounce to Night"||2015||Mr. King vs. Mr. Prince|
|"Jōnetsu no Iro" (情熱の色)||2016||Mr. King|
|"Oh! Summer King" (OH!サマーKING)||2016||Mr. King|
|"Beautiful World"||2017||Mr. King|
|"For the Glory"||2017||Prince|
|"Egaita Mirai (Tadoritsuku Made)" (描いた未来〜たどり着くまで〜)||2018||Prince|
|"You Are My Princess"||2018||Prince|
Awards and nominations
|Year||Award||Category||Nominee / work||Result|
|2018||97th Television Drama Academy Awards||Best Theme Song||"Cinderella Girl"||Nominated|
|2018||Yahoo! Japan Search Awards||Grand Prize||King & Prince||Won|
|2018||Yahoo! Japan Search Awards||Idol Category||King & Prince||Won|
|2019||33rd Japan Gold Disc Award||New Artist of the Year||King & Prince||Won|
|2019||33rd Japan Gold Disc Award||Best 5 New Artists||King & Prince||Won|
|2019||GQ Men of the Year 2019||Pop Icons of the Year||King & Prince||Won|
|2019||2019 MPA Awards||Hit Song Award (JASRAC)||"Cinderella Girl"||Won|
|2020||34th Japan Gold Disc Award||Best 5 Albums||King & Prince||Won|
|2021||35th Japan Gold Disc Award||Best 5 Albums||L&||Won|
|2021||35th Japan Gold Disc Award||Best 3 Music Videos||King & Prince Concert Tour 2019||Won|