Sam Heughan: Going Full Frontal for ‘Outlander‘ Was ’Unnecessary‘ and Betrayed ’My Trust in the Creative Team

Sam Heughan writes in his new memoir, “Waypoints: My Scottish Journey,” that he felt “betrayed” by the “Outlander” creative team after he was pushed into filming a full frontal nudity scene during the end of the Starz drama series’ first season (via Insider). Heughan, who has been the co-lead of “Outlander” since its 2014 debut, was contractually required to film nude scenes, but he did not think going full frontal for one scene was needed.

The controversial scene depicted Heughan’s character, Jamie Fraser, being sexually assaulted by Tobias Menzes’ character. Heughan writes the scene “would have been handled differently” today.

“This wasn’t a moment where I felt that being naked would add to the horror of what Jamie undergoes in that castle dungeon as a form of punishment, subjugation, and humiliation,” Heughan explains.

“The cock shot was unnecessary and did betray my trust in the creative team a bit,” he adds. “We don’t need to see the horror to imagine what the characters go through. Imagination is way more powerful…I pushed back, reasoning that nudity sexualized a horrific experience for my character, and it sparked quite a debate. Creative conversations are a feature of all productions, good art is made by questioning the truth and we all want to get it right.”

The “Outlander” creative team eventually compromised with Heughan and agreed only to show him fully nude in the aftermath of the assault. However, the nudity was ultimately left “on the cutting room floor” during postproduction.

Earlier this year, Heughan told the “Happy Sad Confused” podcast that he was the one to bring an intimacy coordinator onto the show, adding, “It’s important that everyone is protected, but also we find a way to explore these scenes and actually maybe get something more out of them.”

“Outlander” wrapped up its sixth season in May. The show is already renewed for a seventh season, which will consist of 16 episodes.

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