Right out of the pages of a Disney movie, Princess Mako, the granddaughter of Japan’s Emperor Akihito, is ready to give up her royal title to marry a beach tourism worker she met at a restaurant.
The 25-year-old princess is set to be engaged to Kei Komuro, also 25, who is a law firm worker and graduate student, the Imperial House told CNN.
While Komuro is considered to be a commoner, he did star in a tourism campaign for the city of Fujisawa where he played a “Prince of the Sea,” which is as close as he will get to becoming royalty.
The two met five years ago while attending the International Christian University in Tokyo, according to Japan’s national broadcaster NHK.
A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.
Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.
Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.
Despite being Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko granddaughter, Princess Mako must leave the imperial family once she marries a commoner as established by Japan’s centuries-old imperial law.
Princess Mako’s uncle, Crown Prince Naruhito, is the first in line to the throne to succeed Emperor Akihito, followed by her father and then her younger brother.
But she is not the first woman in her family to relinquish their royal status, all in the name of love.
In 2005, Princess Mako’s aunt, Sayako, the only daughter of Emperor Akihito, tied the knot with town planner Yoshiki Kuroda.
As for Komuro, he has said little about popping the question to the princess, telling reporters, “I would like to talk about it when the time comes.”
An announcement, the equivalent of an engagement, and a date for the wedding ceremony will be chosen, and then the couple will make a formal report to the emperor and empress.
NHK said that Princess Mako has already introduced Komuro to her parents, and they approve.