is the "A" of KAT-TUN and one of the two most popular members, along with Kamenashi Kazuya. He became a member of Johnny & Associates Entertainment Agency via audition on November 8, 1998, at the age of 14. He did not pass the first round of auditions. On his way out the door, he gave his number plate back to a "strange man" who told Akanishi to stay. The man turned out to be Johnny Kitagawa himself.
KAT-TUN was originally formed as backup dancers to fellow Johnny''s group KinKi Kids but the group''s unexpected popularity led the agency to allow them to expand into a separate group. However, for unexplained reasons, KAT-TUN was not allowed to officially debut until 5 years later in 2006, at which time their popularity in Japan and East Asia was of such magnitude that their debut single, concert DVD and debut album shattered all relevant music industry records in Japan.
Akanishi has written the lyrics to many songs for KAT-TUN and for himself, including "Care", "Hesitate", and "Love or Like". He can play the guitar and has also composed both song and lyrics for "Murasaki", "Ha-Ha", and "PINKY". He has also collaborated with fellow teammate Ueda Tatsuya to create the song ''Butterfly.''
Akanishi in particular was ranked # 1 as the most wanted lover, most sexy and idol in Japan according to a popular poll taken by DUET magazine in 2007.
KAT-TUN remains one of the most profitable and in demand groups in Japan - their latest 2007 Single, "Keep the Faith" debuted at number 1 on the Oricon music charts.
This marks the group''s fifth consecutive single debuting at number 1. Furthermore, it has set a new record for Asian/Jpop singles on the United World Chart, coming in at number 6. Prior to this, the highest position for a single was #11 gained by Utada Hikaru''s "Flavour of Life." "Keep the Faith" is also the theme song for Akanishi''s j-drama, Yukan Club. It marks his first leading role in a drama and his first drama after returning to Japan on April 19, 2007 from a six month study hiatus in Los Angeles. Since April 2007, KAT-TUN has been hosting its own talkshow, Cartoon KAT-TUN, on Nihon Television (NTV) airing on Wednesdays 23:58 - 24:28. Akanishi has participated in Cartoon KAT-TUN since episode six after his return from Los Angeles. Akanishi has also taken over from Tanaka Koki in hosting the radio show KAT-TUN Style along with fellow KAT-TUN member Taguchi Junnosuke, which airs on Wednesdays from 23:25-23:55. Both were also chosen as hosts of the annual 24-hour Marathon radio Christmas program airing from December 24 noon until December 25 noon.