Sam Heughan Argued Against Being Nude In Outlander Season 1 Rape Scene

Sam Heughan protested being nude in the infamous Outlander season 1 rape scene. Heughan plays the lead role of Jamie Fraser on Outlander. The romance fantasy series began its run in 2014, and has since had six completed seasons. Outlander has been renewed for season 7 by Starz, though specific details of said season have yet to be revealed. Starz officially stated that Outlander season 7 would be 16 episodes, though Heughan has alluded to there actually being 18 episodes.

Aside from its performances and Emmy-nominated costume and production design, Outlander is often known for its sex scenes and nudity. While Outlander may be nothing in comparison to something like Game of Thrones, the show still features a decent amount of such scenes. Heughan’s contract even famously requires him to film nude scenes, which he has done since season 1. One particular scene in Outlander season 1 shocked audiences upon its release. This was the scene in which Jamie, after being detained and tortured by a Redcoat, is raped by Black Jack Randall. The scene is brutal, not shying away from the malice of the action.

Even years after filming the scene, Heughan vividly recalls his conversation with the Outlander team surrounding how graphic it would be in terms of the physical display of his body. According to Insider, Heughan writes in his new memoir, Waypoints: My Scottish Journey, that he did not believe the scene should necessitate baring his skin for the camera. Instead, Heughan found that “being naked” actually “sexualized a horrific experience” rather than enhanced its horror. As a result, Heughan “pushed back,” and he and the creative team would eventually come to decide that Jamie’s naked body would be in view after the rape scene rather than during it. In post-production, the team agreed that explicit shots were to be “left on the cutting room floor.” Heughan writes about his argument, explaining:

See also  Disney Princesses Who Deserve A Live-Action Movie, According To Reddit

“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. 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.

“Times have changed. The cock shot was unnecessary and did betray my trust in the creative team a bit. We don’t need to see the horror to imagine what the characters go through. Imagination is way more powerful.”

Why Heughan Was Right About Outlander’s Rape Scene

Heughan’s final sentiment rings especially true in this current era. This particular Outlander scene was shot over eight years ago. At the time, the conversation surrounding sexual assault and the treatment of actors on set was very different. Outlander season 1 came before the news of Harvey Weinstein’s widespread sexual misconduct allegations against women first broke, giving traction to the #MeToo movement. Since then, the needle has been pushed even further to include conversations about the ethics of consent during onscreen intimacy. Earlier this year, a controversy struck when actor Sean Bean questioned the need for an intimacy coordinator on the set of Game of Thrones. Luckily, most have spoken out against Bean, instead supporting the side of safety and consent in sexual scenes on screen.

These developments already show the protocol has changed since Heughan had to shoot these scenes for Outlander. Shows like House of the Dragon have begun to implement changes, such as showing fewer scenes that take advantage of the series’ women, departing from Game of Thrones’ frequent plots involving violence against women. Perhaps the next season of Outlander will also move away from unnecessarily graphic content that exploits actors’ bodies and towards showing sex scenes only when narratively relevant. At the very least, the series can work to not repeat season 1’s mistakes for the Outlander prequel series.

See also  Is It Cake? Host Mikey Day's Worst Season 1 Puns

Source: Insider

Rate this post

Leave a Comment