When Outlander returns for Season 7, Claire Fraser (Caítriona Balfe) is being held in prison in Wilmington for the murder of Malva Christie (Jessica Reynolds) and Jamie (Sam Heughan), who was separated from his wife by the nefarious Richard Brown (Chris Larkin) and his Committee of Safety, is racing to rescue her from being hanged.
With so much action taking place in Wilmington, Outlander arranged a behind-the-scenes tour of the sets that comprise the town, demonstrating that Scotland, where the STARZ series films, hosts a little slice of America.
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The tour, conducted by Heughan, Richard Rankin (Roger MacKenzie) and Sophie Skelton (Brianna MacKenzie), gives us a peek into one of the largest back lots in all of Europe. We see which buildings are fully constructed and which are just facades.
Heughan gives the biggest behind-the-scenes peek when he reveals the TV magic that allows visitors to arrive by ship to the landlocked location.
Read on for the stars’ tour of the Outlander set in Wilmington.
Sam: Welcome to our version of Selling Wilmington. This is one of the largest back lots in Europe.
Richard: The backlot here has some seriously impressive set work. The design, the craftsmanship that goes into here, the details…absolutely incredible. One of my favorite parts of working on the show is coming into this…is dropping into this…it just brings everything alive in such a real, tangible way.
Sophie: Here we are in a little nook of the town. And even though it’s a tiny portion of the town, a lot has happened to Brianna in this area. She met Jamie for the very first time just around that corner…
Sam: …while Jamie was relieving himself, a very iconic moment.
Sophie: She lost her virginity in this lovely little shack over there.
Richard: The famous Roger and Bree cabin where they have their first love scene. Yeah, this is just a small portion of the Wilmington set. It’s actually huge. It goes quite a good bit back.
Sam: The streets have grown considerably over the years. We’ve added more and more frontage. So, some of these buildings are only fronts. Some of the others are indoor outdoors if you’re interested in buying some property here in Wilmington.
Sophie: And now we’re coming around to one of my favorite bits of the town and this amazing set where it all really opens up. On our right here, we have the inn. Brianna and Lord John (David Berry) came here when they were on their way from Jocasta’s (Maria Doyle Kennedy) to see Steven Bonnet (Ed Speleers) in the prison and that is where they stayed, so thank you, Dr. Dwight.
Sam: So, as we get over to this area, this area has changed an awful lot. Now we’re setting up for a shot here but down here is where Claire is currently being held prisoner.
Sophie: And down here is where Jamie and Brianna sat on a little bench over here. And this is where Brianna was reunited with her mother for the first time in the past. Claire comes down these stairs, sees Bree, and I ran and gave Caítriona a hug that actually did knock the wind out of her.
Sam: So here we are the other end of Wilmington. You can go in a big circle around here. There’s lots of little highways, byways, and alleyways. But this is one of my favorite new constructions. We built the Red Falcon in Season 6. Come and have a look. It’s one of our sets that you can go into the indoor outdoor thing. There’s no swimming pool, unfortunately. However, there’s a billiards table. You’ll remember Jamie Fraser and Hartnett were playing billiards and were almost discovered at Sons of Liberty.
Richard: In contrast to what you see here, quite a lot of this is just the façade of a lot of these buildings. Usually when we shoot interiors, we’ll shoot at the studio, which gives us much more control over sound and light — with the exception of the Red Falcon. That is pretty much functioning.
Sam: But around the corner here, a bit of movie magic. How do people get to Wilmington, you ask? Well, there you go. Isn’t it amazing? That beautiful view. Yes, it’s a blue screen. But that’s where everybody comes and goes from. Not in the van, actually by boat.
Sophie: In the middle of Scotland, we have this beautiful early American town and there’s more to come. We have not seen the end of Wilmington yet, because on the little street behind you, which I won’t show you yet, some very cool things may be set to happen in Season 7. So, we will see you back here then.
Outlander Season 7 will premiere this summer on STARZ.