Actor Pierre Taki has been arrested in Japan for alleged cocaine use. Police officers searched the actor’s car following a tip off.
Taki lends his voice and likeness to yakuza Kyohei Hamura in Judgment, the new game from the Yakuza team. It’s already out in Japan and is due to come to the West later this year.
Japan has a zero tolerance policy for drug use and possession of cocaine can carry a sentence of up to seven years. Sega has temporarily pulled Judgment from sale while it decides what to do. The publisher has also been deleting tweets about the title.
It might seem like an overreaction, but it lines up with Japan’s draconian views on illegal substances and the harsh penalties attached to them.
In 2018, actor Hiroki Narimiya was replaced in Yakuza 4 due to alleged cocaine offenses. It could be that Sega is planning to make a similar change in Judgment, though this will likely be a long and difficult process since the game is already in the wild.
As Kotaku notes, Taki also voices Olaf in the Japanese version of Frozen, as well as in Kingdom Hearts 3. Disney Japan has a track record of choosing the nuclear option when its stars are caught up in any drugs controversy.
Update 2: Voice actor Pierre Taki is having a really bad week. First, he was arrested for cocaine use, then Sega pulled Judgment from sale in Japan, and later, Disney decided to look for a new, Japanese voice over actor for Olaf in Frozen 2.
Olaf appears in the Arendelle area of Kingdom Hearts 3, where Queen Elsa and Princess Anna reside. A release date for the patch was not provided as of press time.
Taki can’t seem to catch a break.