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The death of comedian Ken Shimura on March 29 due to pneumonia caused by COVID-19 sent a shock wave throughout the country. A star on Japanese TV for decades, he was the first major celebrity here to pass away after contracting the virus.

To curb a spike in infections, more individuals and businesses have taken measures to limit the virus’s spread, from social distancing to temporary closures. But the TV and film industries have been slow to follow suit.

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