In the middle of the current Droughtlander, Sam Heughan took a break from filming season 7 of Outlander in Scotland to pop into New York Comic Con to share his thoughts on the role that made him a household name: Jamie Fraser.

The funny thing is, Heughan thinks that his onscreen character wouldn’t have the time of day for him. He said, “I don’t think Jamie would like me,” implying that’s because he’s just a “stupid actor.”

One thing that Heughan doesn’t think is silly, though, is the bestselling novels written by Diana Gabaldon that the STARZ time-travel epic romance is based upon.

“Diana’s story is fantastic, but the historical content, for me, is really interesting,” Heughan said. “On the show, we were in Scotland, we went to Versailles [season 2], and now we’re in America and we’re recounting the story of the American Revolution, which I think is incredible. Not many TV shows have this scope and vast reach over such a long time period.”

Season 7 of Outlander will be mainly based on Gabaldon’s An Echo in the Bone, which will find Jamie and Claire in the midst of the American Revolution with the misfortune that Lord John Grey (David Berry) and his stepson William (Jamie’s unacknowledged illegitimate son to be played by Canadian actor Charles Vandervaart) are on the British side with William in the army and Lord John on the clandestine side of intelligence.

“I think Jamie’s relationship with Willie is one of the most interesting things to play for me,” Heughan said. “It’s unrequited love. He can’t love his son and be a father to him, but he has found ways of doing that. It’s another side to Jamie’s character that he has this unrequited love. He desperately wants to be his father and he can’t. It makes the relationship [between Jamie and Lord John] interesting as well.”

Season 7, which will be 16 episodes long, will make up for the shortage in season 6, which had to be reduced to just eight episodes due to the difficulties of shooting under COVID-19 protocols but also due to Caitríona Balfe’s pregnancy.

Heughan explained the difficulties, “It was the cumulative effect of shooting in Scotland in winter. We always talk about the weather, but it was really tough. Also, I think it was the subject material, the Christies. That family! Also, the COVID protocols. It made everything slower and more difficult. Despite being a smaller season, I think it’s one of the most interesting ones. It’s compact, it’s intense. I actually really enjoyed it, but it was very difficult.”

Heughan was great with the NYCC audience, admitting to the legion of fans that turned out to see the panel that when he signed on to do the series, he was naïve as to what it would mean.

“We didn’t know the vast scope and investment fans had until we went onto social media in the early days and saw that people were anticipating this so much,” he said. “Caitriona and I did an event early on, I think we were shooting episode 4, and there were thousands of people there. It just blew us away. We didn’t know about this anticipation.”

An example of how great he was with the audience came when he answered a question from a woman who wanted to know how he makes himself cry in Jamie’s emotional scenes, of which there have been many.

“I would say he’s very stoic,” Heughan responded. “I don’t think he’s a crier in that he openly weeps. I think he holds things back. He’s strong. But it’s more interesting to play someone who doesn’t want to cry. I don’t ever go out of my way to squeeze one out, so to speak.”

That last remark drew laughter from the crowd, who also wanted to know if there was any word on Outlander moving past season 7 as books eight and nine are already in print and Gabaldon is working on book ten.

But the answer was as expected, absolutely nothing has been officially released.


By Damyan Ivanov

My name is Damyan Ivanov and i was born in 1998 in Varna, Bulgaria. Graduated high school in 2016 and since then i'm working on wordpress news websites.