Sam Heughan leads an interesting life. He’s starred as Jamie Fraser in Outlander for almost a decade, thrilling fans everywhere with his interpretation of the highlands warrior. In his spare time, he also travels around his native Scotland with his Outlander costar Graham McTavish, a process chronicled in the book Clanlands: Whisky, Warfare, and a Scottish Adventure Like No Other as well as on the TV show Men in Kilts: A Roadtrip with Sam and Graham.
Next month, Heughan and McTavish are releasing a follow-up book: Clanlands in New Zealand: Kiwis, Kilts, and an Adventure Down Under. This time, the pair of them are traveling around New Zealand, where McTavish lives. Does this sound a little like Heughan and McTavish have found a way to monetize going on vacation, drinking whiskey and visiting sites of interest? Sure, but wouldn’t you if you could?
McTavish is Scottish but lives in New Zealand, where he was on hand to film The Hobbit movies as the dwarf Dwalin. In fact, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson wrote the forward to the new Clanlands books. And that’s not where the Heughan-Lord of the Rings crossovers end.
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Lord of the Rings special effects artists turned Sam Heughan into Groin the dwarf
During a visit to The Kelly Clarkson Show to promote his book, Heughan shared that while he was in New Zealdan he visited Wētā Workshop, the special effects house that worked on The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies. There, they made him over as Groin the Dwarf, who you can see at the 1:47 mark below:
Incidentally, it sounds like Heughan has been a fan of The Lord of the Rings for a long time. He mentions that he may have been named after a hobbit — no doubt the dependable Samwise Gamgee — and that his brother was named after an elf. His brother’s name is Cirdan, which is also the name of a big-deal elf in The Lord of the Rings mythology. Their parents were clearly Friends of Frodo.
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Sam Heughan wants to be in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Last year, Heughan talked about how he’d like a role on the Amazon show The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, which is coming back for a second season in 2024. “I’m still desperate to be an elf or a dwarf,” he said. “So if The Rings of Power are still casting, I’m available! I’ve even got a ginger wig if they’re interested.” Maybe Groin the Dwarf is a proof of concept for an eventual role on The Rings of Power?