Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Outlander Star Sam Heughan: The Scots Fought Naked

Outlander Star Sam Heughan: speaks to the Parade

By PAULETTE COHN @paulette49

For the full article 

Sam Heughan as Jamie and Caitriona Balfe as Claire(STARZ)

With only four episodes left in Season 2 of Outlander, Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire Fraser (Caitriona Balfe) have taken to the killing fields for the battle of the Scots against the British as they attempt to reinstate a Jacobite king on the throne of Great Britain.

On Saturday night’s Prestonpan episode, trusting in Claire’s knowledge of history, Jamie leads the Jacobite army into a critical battle with British opposition near the town of Prestonpan, even as Claire tends to the dead and dying, a reminder of the true cost of war.

“Episode 10 is my favorite,” Heughan told Parade.com at the Paley Center for Media event The Artistry of Outlander. “It is very rewarding as a Scotsmen and a fan of history. Some of the episodes focus on individual characters, but this one focuses on everyone. Everyone is affected by the battle and everything that happens to them.”

Then he adds with a smile, when asked about costuming for the battle scenes, “The Scots fought naked, or at least dropped their kilts. You will have to watch the episode to see if we do that or not.”

Returning to Scotland has been healing for Jamie and Claire, but in the last episode, when the Fraser men were training for war, the sounds of gunfire and battle gave Claire flashbacks that took her back to the World War II battlefields in France. Momentarily incapacitated, it was obvious she was suffering from PTSD.

“I think a great healer of any kind of trauma is being able to share it with someone,” Balfe says. “I think once Claire shared it with Jamie, it was a big relief for her and it released some of that pressure cooker that she’s been feeling. It releases the pain and the tension, but she knows how tough war is. She knows what they are about to face. Since her miscarriage, Claire is a more fragile woman. She has always had such a strong core, but having such a traumatic event happen not that long ago, she’s a little raw at the moment. But I think you will see her gather herself together and be by Jamie’s side, and be the useful nurse that we know her as.”

Episode 10 of Outlander airs Saturday night at 9 p.m. ET/PT on STARZ, but first read the rest of the interviews with Heughan and Balfe:

Can you talk about what a changed man Jamie is in these last four episodes. He’s back in Scotland, back in his kilts and finding his niche.

Sam: Absolutely. At the start of Season 2, he was half the man he formerly was. He still had a lot to deal with psychology-wise. Then Randall kind of frees him. The fact that Randall is still alive is such a relief to Jamie and he can take control of his destiny, which he does. Of course, it causes problems between him and Claire, but ultimately, by the time they get to these last few episodes, Jamie’s released and finding his feet again, and turning into the man who he is supposed to be, which is as a leader of men. He is a natural clan chief. He is a natural leader and it was a real payoff to play those episodes.

Andrew Gower as Prince Charles Stuart and Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser (STARZ)

In these final four episodes, you are out on the battlefield, will there still be intimacy between Claire and Jamie?

Caitriona: We have seen in Episode 1 that Claire comes back in a certain condition and that doesn’t happen … there’s not a stork that comes. But the relationship is what is the center of this show. We have always said if there is sex, if there is violence, it is there for a reason, it tells you something about where they are. There is a war looming. They are on the road, it would feel trite to put in a non-essential scene.

I think as we saw in episode 8, Scotland is a very healing place for them, and their bond is set now. They are a team and they are fighting together and they are trying to change history, I believe that intimacy is there. Paris was a very poisonous place for them. Now that they’re back in Scotland, they’ve put that behind them.

Sam: Let’s hope so. We know that she’s pregnant when she goes back to the stone, but you can expect a lot of things to happen before that moment.

Claire is very resilient in 1700s in Scotland, would Jamie be as resilient in 1960s in Boston?

Sam: He is a forward thinking man. If Claire were there, he would learn to adapt, but I think it would be quite a stiff learning curve. He would have no patience for many things, but he would probably like airplanes, I imagine.

You have a 90-minute episode coming up for the finale. What can you share?

Sam: In the finale, you will have to tune in to find out, but from episode 10 on down, we really are coming down to zero hour. It is all about this point in time, which is the Battle of Culloden and whether we can stop it or not. That is what is going to happen between then and now.

Most episodes we shoot far more material than we need. Each one could be feature-length. We do shoot for a long time. We probably shot 10 or 11 months this year, and we do press, so the show is all-encompassing. Now the pickup for seasons three and four are going to take us another couple of years.

The Artistry of Outlander exhibit at the Paley Center for Media will run throughout the summer and will take visitors into 18th century Parisian society, where they will be able to view iconic costumes designed by Emmy® Award-winning Costume Designer Terry Dresbach as well as actual set pieces from Outlander production designer Jon Gary Steele, life-size episodic photography, and behind-the-scenes video segments.

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