Sam Heughan reveals filming for Outlander season six is delayed

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Outlander season six is now officially in production after television network Starz gave it the greenlight in 2018. The series is an adaptation of American author Diana Gabaldon’s novels. The book series numbers eight to date and two more expected to be coming out to complete the series.

Was Outlander supposed to end after season 3?

However, the story of Jamie Fraser (played by Sam Heughan) and his wife Claire (Caitriona Balfe) could have been over much sooner than expected.

In an interview on Outcasts: An Unofficial Outlander Podcast hosted by Outlander stars David Berry better known as Lord John Grey and Governor Tryon actor Tim Downie, author Gabaldon opened up about when she first started writing the novels.

Gabaldon was inspired after watching an episode of Doctor Who and decided she wanted to write a practice novel, little did she know her debut would go on to become a global best-seller and spawn a hit television series.

She also hadn’t planned to go much further in the timeline, explaining: “Well, you know, I’ve never looked too far ahead.

“I knew there was more at the end of the first book because obviously it was going to continue into the Jacobite rebellion.

“Originally, I’d intended to go all the way through that, all the way to Culloden by the end of the first book. That was my plan. But I began writing, I could see there was more to this.”

Judging from her words, Outlander could well have ended after the third book Voyager which features the disastrous Battle of Culloden, but it was clear she changed her mind.

Gabaldon went on to say about how she grew her Outlander series, saying: “I began thinking – one problem with my books in terms of sales is that you cannot describe them to anyone.

“As my first editor said, ‘These are going to have to be word-of-mouth books because you can’t describe them to anyone.’ And that’s right.”

She explained: “For a while they tried to sell it as romance, and it worked and established a base of readers.”

But the acclaimed writer said the story was more expansive: “Outlander has the underlying skeleton of a romance novel, amongst other things, that is, it’s a courtship story. It’s got other things a romance novel wouldn’t have.

“It could actually be called a very large romance novel. The thing about romance novels is that they don’t have sequels. They are all courtship stories and once the courtship is over, the couple are married and have a baby. That’s it. That’s not what I was doing.

“I said, ‘Well, I’m thinking about this, I don’t want to do the same thing over again.’ This is why the books are weird because I never like to do the same thing I have already done.

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“I said, ‘I’m not going to do a courtship story, but I have never seen anyone try to tell the story of how you stay married for 50 years.’

“Everyone can write a story about how you fall in love. That’s easy. Everyone understands it. But how do you live with another person and stay?”

She added: “That seems like a worthy angle, that’s what I’m doing.”

Thankfully, Outlander is still going strong both onscreen as well as the books with Gabaldon’s ninth novel Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone slated to be coming out soon.

Fans will also be treated to a final 10th novel which will round off the series in spectacular style.

Starz also confirmed earlier this year its plans to roll out a raft of Outlander content based on the world created by Gabaldon, which could include a Lord John series based on the novellas and short stories she’s previously penned.

There’s plenty more Outlander to come and once lockdown is lifted, season six can begin filming and could be released in 2021.

Previously reflecting on the future of Outlander, actor and producer Heughan told fans on Twitter: “I hope we continue for years. There have been discussions. Just hope you all keep watching!x.”

Whether this means there will be 10 seasons remains to be seen but there’s certainly lots of content for the TV series to draw on.

Outcasts: An Unofficial Outlander Podcast is available on Acaster

Outlander seasons 1 to 5 are streaming on Amazon Prime Video now

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