Billy Blanks Marries Japanese Woman

April 11, 2009

I just read some tabloid news saying that Billy Blanks of Billy’s Boot Camp has married a 39 year old Osaka woman named Tomoko Sato who works as an interpreter. A ceremony is scheduled to be held in Osaka in June. The woman is also reported to have given birth to their child in November… many tabloids are describing it as a “shotgun wedding”.

They are said to have met in California when Tomoko went to Billy’s house to take a picture of him. He asked her to teach him Japanese, then their relationship became more serious.

Billy is also planning to apply for permanent residency in Japan so that he can work and live in Osaka, and deepen his understanding of Japanese culture. The article also mentions plans to open an exercise studio in Shinsaibashi, Osaka in July.

Here’s the article in Yomiuri online: Billy Blanks to Marry Japanese Woman

I am pretty sure that Billy does not fit the requirements for permanent residency yet so if he is granted it that would be a case of the immigration officials making a huge exception.


The wedding ceremony for Billy Blanks and Tomoko Blanks is done and some pictures have been published in Japanese news.


1 jt April 12, 2009 at 12:26 pm

he got married so he can get a spousal visa which is pretty close to permanent residency. LOL WAT

2 jay April 13, 2009 at 12:57 am

The dangerous thing about spousal if you have kids is that if you get divorced you can be asked to leave the country. Of course, that’s not a situation you want to plan for. I’m actually interested to see if the Japanese government waives all of the regular residency and length of marriage requirements for a celebrity.

Immigration laws being applied differently in different cases is kind of a hot topic lately since the case of Noriko Calderon, but the inconsistent granting of permanent residency and citizenship has been a hot topic among non-Japanese residents of Japan for a while.

Personally, I hope he gets permanent residency and sets a precedent to make it easier for non-Japanese people and companies to do live, work, and do business here.

3 Dave May 7, 2009 at 8:57 am

Note to Mr Blanks: Tell them you like Japan because it is the only country with four seasons, and you’ll be in like Flint!

4 jay May 7, 2009 at 1:35 pm

I like that Japan has both mountains and sea. (Dave, do you hear that one much in Okinawa?)

5 Dave May 7, 2009 at 3:17 pm

That’s the first time I’ve ever heard that one. It gets said a lot?

6 jay May 8, 2009 at 2:15 pm

I guess you get it more in cities that have both… people often discuss the ever important dichotomy between those who prefer the sea and those who prefer the mountains. Once you choose sides, the response is usually, “Ahhh, naruhodo… naruhodo….” or the occasionally “Yappari”, or “Sasuga”.