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Shōgun EP: Fuji’s Tea-Sipping Reaction Shot Had Crew ‘Guffawing,’ ‘Was Everything We Dreamed It Would Be’

Shōgun‘s Fuji sipping tea as Mariko and the brothel owner negotiated the Anjin‘s gift in this week’s episode was “the reaction shot I was waiting for [viewers to see],” says series co-creator Justin Marks.

The instantly iconic reaction shot came midway through the March 26 episode of the FX/Hulu saga, as Mariko (played by Anna Sawai) negotiated Blackthorne’s assignation with teahouse proprietor Gin’s (Yûko Miyamoto) very best courtesan, while the often-silent Fuji (Moeka Hoshi) looked on.

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When Gin asked if Mariko will be on hand for the Anjin’s appointment with Kiku — as a translator, of course (though perhaps more!) — Fuji raised a teacup to her lips and barely stifled a smirk, savoring the “tea” spilling right before her.

“[That was] the reaction shot I was waiting for,” Marks said as a guest (with co-creator/wife Rachel Kondo) on The Ringer’s Prestige TV podcast. “Where her body doesn’t move, and this ‘disembodied hand’ is lifting the teacup in front of her mouth…? It was just extraordinary.”

And if you at home let out a laugh while watching that scene, know that many on-set did as well.

“When we were [filming] it, you could hear video village, all of us, guffawing at every single bit of magic that Moeka Hoshi was doing with it,” Marks shared. “It was everything we ever dreamed it would be.”

Marks and Kondo also sang Sawai’s praises, for the scene in which Kiku (for lack of a better term) talked dirty to Blackthorne, and Mariko put a… ahem, personal… spin on the translation.

“[Kiku] feeds words into the translator as a means of getting [Mariko] to say things that she would [otherwise] conceal behind her ‘Eightfold Fence’ for the first time,” Marks noted.

Namely, Mariko said to Blackthorne on behalf of Kiku, “Settle your eyes on what you desire. My unclothed form. Just as I am, with nothing between us. I ask you into my openness.” Mariko notably switched pronouns along the way, from “she” (as in Kiku) to “I.”

“[Anna] got it,” raved Kondo. “There’s that little flicker of her eye where she makes that choice” to switch pronouns, to a degree that the character got flustered and had to compose herself while Blackthorne and Kiku got down to business.

Want scoop on Shōgun, or for any other TV show ? Email InsideLine@tvline.com, and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line!

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