Sam Heughan And Graham McTavish's Antics While Filming Outlander Got As Filthy As You'd Guess

Dougal and Jamie in Outlander on Starz

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Diana Gabaldon may be the brain that created the epic love story between Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall; however, she is one of those few lucky authors that also gets to spend some time on set. As part of the promotion for series lead Sam Heughan and his Outlander pal Graham McTavish’s new book, Gabaldon shared some fun and quite filthy set stories from the two adventure seekers.

As you may have guessed, Outlander uses a lot of horses on set. Sometimes those scenes go quite well. Other times there are bathroom incidents and some issues with jiggling. In fact, ahead of the release of Clanlands, we’ve been given a look at the intro to the new book from Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish, written by Diana Gabaldon, who revealed…

I’m only on set myself intermittently, but I do recall the day in Season 2 when Sam’s horse – which he was preparing to mount – decided to take its mother’s advice and relieve itself before setting out (there’s a reason why most costumes are made in multiples). And another occasion during Season 2 wherein Graham was required to ride a mechanical horse (as the director said to me, ‘It looks like shit, but you won’t be able to actually see it on film’).

OK, when I woke up this morning, I didn’t think I’d be reading about or writing a story on the cool, suave fan-favorite character being doused in waste by a horse. But here we are and there’s the quote. Per the intro (which is featured in full over at Town and Country), sometimes the filthiest moments are comments from the actors themselves however.

As Diana Gabaldon got really into the story of the mechanical horse, the Outlander author revealed that it was maybe not the easiest object to film on. In fact, Graham McTavish had some troubles with his nether parts and made no bones about letting people on the set know. Gabaldon wrote:

The mechanical horse was carried on the back of a truck, followed by another truck with a camera, and Graham was supposed to leap into the mechanical horse’s saddle while moving (supposedly jump-ing from another horse). This being television, they filmed the scene many, many times to ensure enough footage to get the effect they were after. When they finally stopped, Graham staggered downhill from the road where they’d been doing this, pausing by me and Anne Kenney (brilliant writer of the other episode in that block of filming) to say, ‘I’ve just been having a conversation with my balls. They said, "We’d really rather you didn’t do that again."' And staggered on, muttering, ‘I knew I should have worn a cup this morning.’

I’ve heard that actors often get really close on the sets of TV shows and movies, but if these are the types of stories featured in Clanlands, I’m here for it. It should be noted, however, that the new book is less Outlander focused and more Scotland-focused, though the two men are exploring the country together for the book and should have some pretty great stories. (It also has a cool subtitle: Whisky, Warfare, and a Scottish Adventure Like No Other.)

So, if you’re here for the Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish bromance, doubtless you’ll still like the book. It just hit shelves on November 3 and you can order it now.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.