BY LYNETTE RICE • @LYNETTERICE
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Two very important characters are set to debut on the second season finale of Outlander, and EW has snagged the first look!
Meet Brianna Randall (Sophie Skelton) and Roger Wakefield (Richard Rankin), two of the most integral characters to the Outlander series behind Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire (Caitriona Balfe). Though viewers of the Starz drama met younger versions of the duo in previous episodes, this is the first time the network has released images from the July 9 finale.
Brianna is the daughter of Jamie and Claire (though raised in America by her mom’s first husband, Frank) while Roger is her future love interest in the saga about a WWII combat nurse who travels back in time to 18th-century Scotland.
“There is so much anticipation for these characters,” says Rankin, a 33-year-old Glasgow native who appeared in Bradley Cooper’s 2015 flick Burnt. “I really think what we care most about is whether people are going to be happy with these characters that they’ve been waiting two years for.”
Though cast in 2015, Starz and the Outlander team have kept a tight lid on details surrounding Brianna and Roger’s debut. Producers, in fact, were so concerned about leaks they hid the actors from public view when they finally filmed their scenes in Scotland.
“There’s been this buildup for so long,” says the U.K.-born Skelton, 22, who expects to endure some scrutiny from fans who have devoured Diana Gabaldon’s novels from which the series is based. “It’s a scary thought because of things like the fact that Brianna’s from Boston, but we decided not to go with a Boston accent. We just assumed that given how she was raised in a private Catholic school in the ’60s, she sort of had any Boston drummed out of her and she’d be a standard American.”
“And then there are things like the eye color,” she continues. “I think people are expecting [her to wear] contacts because Bri’s eyes are blue [in the books]. Everybody will have a different view.”
For more from Skelton and Rankin on their big reveal, pick up the next issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands Friday.
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