Outlander star Sam Heughan has said that he felt “betrayed” by the show’s creative team, after showing his penis in a rape scene in the first season.
The actor, who plays Jamie Fraser in the Starz series, recalled filming a scene in which Jamie is sexually assaulted by Black Jack Randall, played by Tobias Menzies.
Heughan spoke of the “harrowing” experience filming the scene in his new memoir Waypoints: My Scottish Journey, according to The Independent.
“A clause in my contract required me to film nude scenes,” he wrote. “Even so, 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 sexualised 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.”
The actor revealed it would then be decided for Jamie to be “sprawled on the dungeon stones”, fully naked, after the assault was over.
“Those closing scenes were incredibility challenging to film, even though, thankfully the nude shots ended on the cutting room floor. It was a harrowing, exhausting experience,” the actor added.
He also said he believes the scene would have been filmed differently today. “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.”
In 2020, Heughan topped a poll to be the next James Bond, after surveying nearly 80,000 fans. The actor has not since commented on the future of the franchise.