SHŌGUN Star/Producer Hiroyuki Sanada and Co-Creators Share How The Series is a Cultural Awakening and Revelation

The co-creators and star of SHŌGUN share their dedication to delivering authenticity with the series

FX Network’s upcoming epic limited-series, Shōgun, is more than just a historical drama; it’s a cultural revelation. Set in feudal Japan, the series not only captivates with its gripping narrative but also serves as a bridge to understanding and appreciating a rich and complex culture as well as showcasing an era of history that is often misrepresented if represented at all in Western education. At the press conference for the series, the team behind the soon-to-be hit miniseries shared their focus on authenticity with us.

A Journey of Cultural Discovery


As co-creator Rachel Kondo puts it, the show is “kind of a cultural awakening,” offering viewers a chance to immerse themselves in a world that, despite being set centuries ago, resonates with contemporary relevance.

“It’s kind of a cultural awakening, I mean, to do that. I was wondering… how important a show like this is, even though it’s set several hundred years ago, to really open up a door to other cultures and really have a chance to be awakened, just as the engine is, as we’re starting to see.”

-Rachel Kondo, Co-Creator, Executive Producer, & Writer-

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Kondo’s observation highlights the show’s ability to transcend time and place, inviting audiences to explore the nuances of Japanese culture and history. Shōgun delves deep into the intricacies of its setting, offering a nuanced portrayal that challenges and enriches the viewer’s understanding.

Breaking Stereotypes and Embracing Authenticity


The series also takes significant strides in breaking long-held stereotypes. Hiroyuki Sanada, a star and producer of the show, emphasizes the respect and authenticity brought to the portrayal of Japanese culture.

“I think this time we could make it because they are respecting, you know, other cultures to make drama. Yeah. I’m so happy to be a part of this one.”

-Hiroyuki Sanada, Star & Producer-

Sanada’s involvement ensured that Shōgun stayed true to its roots, offering a portrayal that is both authentic and respectful. This authenticity is not just in the depiction of historical events but also in the representation of the characters and their interactions. His excitement was palpable and really showcases how proud he of this project.

A Modern Tale with Timeless Lessons


Shōgun is not just a window into the past; it’s a mirror reflecting modern issues. The show’s exploration of themes like power, ambition, and cultural clash has a contemporary resonance. Justin Marks, another co-creator, speaks to this relevance:

“We went into the writers’ room. We hired a dominantly all but one, I believe, you know, Asian American writing staff, Japanese American, as well as Chinese American, too, and felt like we were really starting to kind of unearth certain tropes, concerns, ideas that our writers were fearful of and wanting to get right.”

-Justin Marks, Co-Creator, Executive Produce, & Showrunner

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Marks’ approach to the writers’ room ensured a diverse range of perspectives, enriching the storytelling with layers of cultural depth and understanding.

Actual History


Shōgun stands as a testament to the power of television to not only entertain but also educate and enlighten. Its commitment to cultural authenticity and its exploration of universal themes make it a must-watch for anyone interested in a deeper understanding of not just Japanese culture, but the human condition itself. As it bridges the past and present, Shōgun invites viewers on a journey of discovery, challenging perceptions and opening doors to new ways of seeing the world.

Shōgun premieres on FX and Hulu on February 27, 2024. Be sure to come back every day this week for more of the press conference.

About Shōgun

Release Date: February 27, 2024
Adapted from: Shōgun by James Clavell
Executive Producers: Edward L. McDonnell; Justin Marks; Rachel Kondo; Andrew Macdonald; Allon Reich; Michael De Luca; Michaela Clavell
Producers: Hiroyuki Sanada
Genre: Historical drama
Network: Hulu; FX

Based on James Clavell’s novel, FX’s Shōgun is set in Japan in the year 1600 at the dawn of a century-defining civil war. Lord Yoshii Toranaga is fighting for his life as his enemies on the Council of Regents unite against him, when a mysterious European ship is found marooned in a nearby fishing village.

Are you ready to experience the dramatic tour de force that is Shōgun? What are you excited about most for the series? Have you read the original novel? Let us know your thoughts on Discord!

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Kevin Fenix

Kevin Fenix

Professional Nerd | Amateur Human | Creative/Content Director The best way to describe Kevin Fenix is the kid you never tell what the buttons do in video games so you have a chance to win. Being 6’ 4” and Asian, he never really fit in, so he got comfortable standing out. Not only is it easy to find him in crowds, he dabbles in the culinary arts, does a little stand up and improv, and can honestly say Spider-Man is the Jesus-like influence of his life. Kevin Fenix loves dogs, movies, television, comics, comedy, and to shoot people… with video.