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June 2016

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PRIMETIME 16 POST JUNE 2016 tarz's hugely popular hit drama Outlander (based on the best- selling book series by Diana Gabaldon) has returned for its sophomore season, where it continues the tale of Claire Randall, a 1940s English combat nurse who is suddenly swept back in time to 1743 Scotland, and her romantic Scottish warrior Jamie Fraser. Since its original airdate in 2014, the Golden Globe- and Emmy-nominated and People's Choice Award-winning series has earned the network a reported five million viewers per episode. And, its second season premiere episode set a Starz record for highest-ever viewership. This season, the show takes viewers beyond Scotland's borders to France, as Claire and Jamie are set on changing the course of history by infiltrating the Jacobite rebellion and preventing the battle of Culloden that ultimately dooms Scottish life. For the production and post teams, in- cluding a brand new, full-time visual effects supervisor (Richard Briscoe), some of the season's greatest challenges were in devel- oping the lavish sets, and creating worlds that were equally believable and stunning. Elicia Bessette, co-producer on Outlander, recently spoke with Post from LA while finishing up the season's final episode, about its workflow, moving into 4K and taking the storyline outside of the Scottish landscape. Can you discuss some of the season's biggest challenges? "Yes, our challenges for this season were a little bit more intensive than last, and we've taken that next step with our set extensions. We were lucky with our first season in that Scotland hasn't really changed much, with its beautiful, moun- tainous landscapes and castles. As you saw with Dneg [Post's interview last year with Double Negative's Jonathan Privett on the show's VFX], the castles were there, but we had to make them look old- er or adjust certain things to make them true to the period. "This season, the episodes take place in Paris. And, Paris today does not look like 18 th century Paris, so we couldn't exactly go there and shoot. Instead, what we chose was Prague, which pretty much looks just like 18 th century Paris, with its cobblestone streets. It's fabulous. So, a lot of the work consisted of getting rid of electric lights, any kind of elements in there that didn't belong, and that means expanding from there on out. In some of the episodes, there's this beautiful stair- case, where you get to see the river and the bridges, that's all done by our amaz- ing DP in Prague. He did a great job. But this season is really all about our set ex- tensions, where we have gone above and beyond. Episode 1, for example, the plane in the LaGuardia airport scene wasn't STARZ'S OUTLANDER BY LINDA ROMANELLO POST GOES BEYOND SCOTISH BORDERS FOR THE HIT DRAMA S Color (on Nucoda) got a boost for the Paris episodes — including Claire's red dress.

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