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Kaoru Oshima: Beyond Cross-Dressing Part Four

KAI-YOU - Original Japanese Date: June 28th, 2015
English Translation Published: January 29th, 2016

Kaoru Oshima is one of the most popular cross-dressers who ignited the dormant genre by starring in a slew of Japanese AV titles before retiring in June of 2015.

(Translator's note: This post is a continuation of a previous entry.)


KAI-YOU: Masturbating to yourself is your ideal cross-dressing barometer?

Kaoru Oshima: I'd say so. Otherwise, I'd be going about this the wrong way. I mean things have gotten better now for both the newhalf and cross-dressing genres. They used to not sell at all because only the most maniac of fans would watch them. The pay used to be horrible. The stars of these titles would receive much, much less than your average AV star for doing the same—if not more—amount of work. Production costs for these titles also were in the pits and it really showed. People used to buy that, but they never sold that well. However, since they were selling consistently, they kept on being produced in spite of the bad quality. It was a real vicious cycle.

Also the knowledge even a few years ago wasn't much. Fans and production crew alike did not know that much about how newhalfs thought. Most were transitioning from male to female and were determined to go through with SRS. What they were seeing was not the final outcome of that person. Many of these newhalfs worked in AV and in brothels in order to secure enough money to pay for the surgeries needed to finish their transitions. Cross-dressers have always been on the way-point between wanting to become a woman and simply sitting on the edge between going down that road or returning to being a man. Thus, their appearance in AV and in brothels should not be grouped with that of newhalfs.


KY: It sounds like you also did your fair share of soul-searching while being an AV star. By the way, is Kaoru Oshima a stage name or...?

KO: It's a stage name. On one of my early shoots I still had no name so the director thought up 'Kaoru' for me. I think this was a school shoot so the teacher had to call me by my last name and 'Oshima' was also thought up rather quickly by him. That's the story of how I became Kaoru Oshima.


KY: Have you ever been in a real life situation where you helped out a fan in someway?

KO: Well, I have a story that may be kind of related. You see, back when I was in high school, I belonged to the art club. My dream was to attend the Tokyo University of Arts and Music. I heard from an adviser that they were having a big painting contest. I gave it my all and put paint to paper and made something I was really proud of. It was really unique, too: a waterfall running into a stream with a woman in a white kimono who was bleeding. However, when I showed it to my adviser, he was really confused.

What did you paint?!” was his reaction. I told him the blood was the antithesis of the waterfall. The former was environmental prosperity whereas the latter was its destruction. He told me if it required people to think too hard on the work, they may not have the time to understand it. He said I should be in more control of my hands when it comes time to create things. I took those words to heart and always put my entire body and mind into whatever I produce now be it art or AV. My adviser's words now serve as a mantra to how I live my life.


KY: How do you feel about sometimes being referred to as a 'cross-dressing AV actress'?

KO: Let me first say that newhalfs were originally men who have had surgery and are taking hormones and still have their male genitalia. With that in mind, I'm not entirely pleased with being referred to as a 'cross-dressing AV actress', but I have come to terms with it more or less. I originally dreamed of becoming a famous cross-dressing AV star, but now I feel I'm just trying to be myself, Kaoru Oshima.


Kaoru Oshima can give just as well as he can receive.


KY: Did you gain or lose anything when performing in AV?

KO: I'm not sure if 'gain' is the best word to use, but I did build a desire for wanting more. One thing I really wanted to do was direct my own title starring another cross-dresser. It was hard though to do what I wanted if you already weren't at the top. A top director could amass top talent, but for me that would be rather difficult. I may not have been able to do that, but I feel that retiring from AV was the first step in solidifying the entertainment icon that may someday be Kaoru Oshima.

If I never entered the AV business, I probably wouldn't be here talking with you. I don't view it as a bad thing and I definitely don't feel like I failed at anything. I also don't keep my AV career a secret when I talk to my friends.


To be concluded...

Interview by Koduck Kawaguchi


(Translator's note: it's great that Kaoru Oshima is not distraught about his AV career. Most who retire look back upon it with disgust. Most actually just want to put it behind them. There are very few who embrace their time having sex in front of the camera and work with it for a more prosperous future.)

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