On November 29, 2017 Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA) in Japan held in Yokohama Arena celebrated performances and achievements in Korean music. Popular idol group AKB48 and their producer Yasushi Akimoto were also in attendance at the award show. At this event, Mnet announced the upcoming collaboration project between AKB48 and PRODUCE 101. “PRODUCE48” plans to create a global girl group in a collaboration between Mnet and Akimoto.
PRODUCE 101 is a large-scale ‘survival show’ that brings together 101 idol trainees to undergo training in various areas by industry professionals. The audience then gets to ‘produce’ the group by selecting the top 11 members to form a temporary girl unit that will perform for only 1 year. This girl group will release a debut song and promote under a group name and concept that are also chosen by the viewers. On the other hand, we may all be bit more familiar with AKB48 as the “idols you can meet” through their daily theater performances. PRODUCE48 aims to combine the concepts of these two entities to form an unprecedented collaboration program between Japan and Korea in 2018.
At MAMA 2017, Akimoto was also presented with the Inspired Achievement award. MAMA 2017, also featured a collaboration between AKB48 and contestants from the first season of “Produce 101” and “Idol School” performing “Pick Me”, “Heavy Rotation” and “Koisuru Fortune Cookie”.
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