While Brianna Randall and Roger Wakefield are set to make their first grown-up appearances in the upcoming season finale of the time-travel series, it proved to be a challenging task for executive producer and showrunner Ron D. Moore to find the right actors to embody Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie’s (Sam Heughan) daughter and the man who will eventually become her love interest.
In a recent interview with EW, Moore explained that casting Brianna (Sophie Skelton, Ren) was a difficult process because they had to find a young woman who could actually pass for Claire and Jamie’s daughter. It was also equally challenging to find the right actor to play Roger, and they found him in Richard Rankin (The Crimson Field, Burnt).
“They’re very tricky roles to cast, especially when you’re casting the adult child of two of our leads. You want to see both characters in her immediately, which is a big challenge, just in terms of who that actress is going be. She also has to play, literally, the daughter of Claire in the 13th episode. And she has to have a certain chemistry with Roger. Even though she’s in that episode very strongly, she’s not as strongly in the next season. The role of Roger and Brianna grows over the course of the books. But at first, you’re just seeing the two of them for briefer periods of time. So yeah, all these things add up to a very complex process, trying to find the woman who would fit all these parameters.”
22-year-old Sophie Skelton says there was plenty of agonizing over her first appearance and she reveals they had to reshoot her first scene because her newly-dyed hair was too wavy and not appropriate for the time period (the 1960s).
“We had trials. Obviously, trying to get the red right and sorting out styles. Our first day was actually a 16½ hour shoot. The hair wasn’t quite right. So, we ended up doing it again…. Brianna is supposed to have the same kind of curly red hair as Jamie, but it’s the ’60s so it would be more straight with the fashion. So yeah, we ended up changing it.”
Season 2 of Outlander will come to a close on July 9 but, fear not! Starz has already renewed the Golden Globe-nominated (and 2016 Saturn Awards-winning) series for a third and fourth season. Are you looking forward to meeting Roger and Brianna?