"Outlander" may be ending with season eight, but fans can look forward to a new prequel series.
"Outlander: Blood of My Blood" will focus on the origin stories of Jamie and Claire's parents.
Production on the 10-episode series is now underway in Scotland. Here's everything you need to know.
It was announced in early 2023 that "Outlander" had been renewed for an eighth but final season, putting a pin in Starz's original plan to adapt all of Diana Gabaldon's novels (the last of which has still not yet been written).
Although that will bring Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire's (Caitríona Balfe) time-traveling escapades to a close, audiences will be delighted to learn that a prequel series continuing the story of the Fraser family is officially in production.
Speculation that Starz was expanding the "Outlander" universe began in 2020 when Deadline reported that the network bosses had encouraged producers Ronald D. Moore and Maril Davis to "to plot a slew of spin-offs, sequels and story extensions."
The prequel series was officially greenlit in 2022, and several months later, it was confirmed that the writers' room had started working on scripts and that the series had been given a name — "Outlander: Blood of My Blood."
While a release date for the series hasn't been announced, lots of other details about the series have been shared, including who has been cast in the main roles as Jamie and Claire's parents. Keep reading for everything we know about the series so far.
The series will tell two parallel origin stories: how Jamie's parents came to meet and Claire's parents' romance.
Per an official description shared by Starz in February 2023, the series will "center on these two parallel love stories set in two different time periods, with Jamie's parents in the early 18th century Scottish Highlands and Claire's parents in WWI England."
The streamer had previously stated that the prequel would center on Jamie's mother and father, Ellen MacKenzie and Brian Fraser — two characters that audiences know plenty about, mainly through stories told by their son.
An abridged version of Ellen and Brian's love story was detailed by Jamie in season one: the pair eloped together and stayed hidden until Ellen was visibly pregnant with their first child, forcing her family to accept their union.
The decision to include Claire's parents in the show is sure to be a welcome one. Not much is known about Julia Moriston and Henry Beauchamp beyond the fact that they died when Claire was a young girl.
"We're thrilled to be telling the stories of these two couples," said Matthew B. Roberts, showrunner, executive producer and writer on both "Outlander" and "Outlander: Blood of My Blood."
"The origins of their relationships explore universal themes that transcend time periods, and we're so excited for fans to discover and fall in love with these characters and their love stories the way they have with Claire and Jamie."
The four main roles have been cast.
Harriet Slater, best known for her role in "Pennyworth," will play Jamie's mother, Ellen MacKenzie, in the 18th-century Scotland storyline, alongside Lifetime actor Jamie Roy, who plays his father, Brian Fraser.
As for Claire's parents, whose story unfolds in World War I-era England, Hermoine Corfield, previously seen in "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation," will play Julia Moriston; "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again" actor Jeremy Irvine will play her father, Henry Beauchamp.
The series will be set in two timelines: one in the early 1700s and the other in the early 1900s.
As Roberts stated, the series will take place in two different time periods.
The story focusing on Brian and Ellen will be set sometime around 1716, some 30 years before Claire travels back in time and meets Jamie. That's when the Great Gathering at Castle Leoch happened — where Brian and Ellen met for the first time — according to the "Outlander" books.
That would make our heroine Ellen and her future husband Brian both 25 at the time the series begins, as they were both born in 1681, per details shared in "Dragonfly in Amber."
The other story about Claire's parents is likely to take place sometime in the 1910s. As fans know from the first book installment, Claire was born in 1918 and was five years old when her parents passed away in 1923. Exact details on when her parents met or how old they were are not known.
Diana Gabaldon is involved as a consulting producer — and she's also writing a book about the characters, too.
The author has confirmed that, alongside writing what is expected to be the tenth and final novel in the "Outlander" series, she is also working on several other stories connected to Jamie and Claire, including a prequel novel about Jamie's parents.
The book does not yet have a title, but Gabaldon told the audience at the 2022 Edinburgh International Book Festival that it includes romance and plenty of historical intrigue.
"The story is woven in with the Jacobite Risings – there will be a lot of clan politics and other interesting things," she said, per The Scotsman.
As for how the show's producers are working with Gabaldon and her unfinished novel, executive producer Maril Davis told Business Insider in August: "We hope she will share as she goes, but we've kind of been taking the breadcrumbs she's left in her books and expanding on those to build a story."
Starz has said the prequel will be 10 episodes.
In a press release from January, Starz announced that "Outlander: Blood of My Blood" had been greenlit for a 10-episode season.
It hasn't been confirmed if that means the series will be a one-off or whether viewers can expect more seasons after "Outlander: Blood of My Blood" airs. Representatives for Starz did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment.
The title is a nod to the vow Jamie made to Claire on their wedding day.
If you were wondering what "Blood of My Blood" means exactly, it's a phrase that "Outlander" fans know well, as it's part of the Gaelic blood vow that Gabaldon created that Jamie and Claire exchanged on their wedding day.
'"Ye are blood of my blood, and bone of my bone, I give ye my body, that we two might be one. I give ye my spirit, 'til our life shall be done."
The series will feature some beloved characters from "Outlander."
However, because the Brian and Ellen timeline part of the prequel will be set nearly three decades before the events of the main series, don't expect any of the same actors to be playing the roles.
Some characters who could show up in the prequel include Jamie's uncles Dougal MacKenzie (Graham McTavish) and Colum MacKenzie (Gary Lewis), as well as his aunt, Jocasta MacKenzie (Maria Doyle Kennedy).
It's likely that Murtagh Fitzgibbons (Duncan Lacroix) could also make an appearance, given the fact that it has been revealed in "Outlander" that he once held a flame for Ellen.
A younger version of Jamie Fraser may also appear.
In an interview with Esquire, Sam Heughan said that while he's definitely not in the show, there's a chance a younger version of his character could be.
"All I can tell you is I'm not in it, as Jamie's not in it," he said. "I believe that it's a prequel focusing on Jamie's parents when they were younger, so I guess you might see a young version of him at some point."
If the story of his parents does kick off around 1715 as we suspect, that's six years before Jamie's birth in 1721, meaning that audiences shouldn't expect him to come into the series straightaway. Brian and Ellen had two other children before he was born, after all.
Filming for "Outlander: Blood of My Blood" began in January 2024, so audiences shouldn't expect to see it land on screens for quite some time.
According to Gabaldon's blog, filming for the prequel commenced on January 22, 2024, in Glasgow (and without giving too much away, she added: "I'm liking everything I'm seeing!")
According to the BBC, it had originally been scheduled to kick off on January 7 and wrap on January 27. The two-week delay to the start of production can be attributed to the inclement weather in the Scottish city faced at the start of the year.
Per the BBC's report, the series is expected to air in 2025 after the final series of "Outlander" next year. However, it may hit screens later than that, as fans are still awaiting the second half of "Outlander" season seven and the drama's final eighth season.
If "Outlander: Blood of My Blood" does not air until after "Outlander" has wrapped, it will more likely be sometime in 2026.
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