‘Outlander’ Stars Reflect on First Season #TCA15

Pasadena, Calif. — In his opening remarks at the TCA winter press tour Friday, Starz CEO Chris Albrecht said he hopes Outlander, the popular series returning for the second half of its first season on April 4, “will be around forever.”

Author Diana Gabaldon said she is currently writing the ninth book in the series, the first of which, Outlander, was published in 1991.

“The TV show has brought me a lot more male viewers,” she said during the show’s TCA panel. “Men tend not to join book clubs ... now they’re kind of coming out of the woodwork.”

Ronald D. Moore, the executive producer who developed the show, said the writers don’t make any changes to the story unless they absolutely have to. As such, Sam Heughan said the audience will learn a lot more about his character Jamie in the season’s second half.

“You start to see the stubborn side, the pride,” Heughan said. “He’s less of the idealistic man in the second (half). You start seeing his failings, the chinks in his armor.”

Caitriona Balfe, who plays Claire, said filming the first season proved her strength and resilience. “You don’t go through something like that without realizing, ‘Wow, that’s a big achievement,’” she said.

Other highlights from the panel included:

—Balfe talked about the importance of filming in Scotland. “It informs everything we do,” she said. “The landscape is so beautiful. The castles, different locations, they add so much texture to the show.”

—Gabaldon was naturally apprehensive about casting for the TV adaptation of her book series. “I knew lots of people I didn’t want,” she said, adding that she did not think it was possible to get actors as good as Balfe and Heughan.