9:47am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Ron Moore's 'Outlander' Taps Sam Heughan as Lead
It's official: British actor Sam Heughan has been tapped to star in Ron Moore's upcoming Starz drama series Outlander.
The premium cable network on Tuesday confirmed the casting, which leaked via Twitter over the Fourth of July holiday weekend.
Heughan will star as Jamie Fraser in the network's adaptation of Diana Gabaldon's internationally best-selling books. Starz greenlit the drama series earlier this year for a 2014 premiere. Production will begin in the fall in Scotland.
The drama revolves around Fraser, who strikes up a passionate affair with Claire Randall, a married combat nurse from 1945 who is mysteriously swept back in time to 1743. Armed with sheer grit and enduring strength, Fraser is a young Scottish clan lord with a complicated past and a disarming sense of humor. He's further described as intelligent, principled and -- by 18th-century standards -- educated and worldly, with tenderness and compassion that stand out in contrast to his contemporaries. A natural leader of men, he has no political ambitions or desire for battlefield glory. Instead, he wishes to remove the price on his head and return to his family’s ancestral farm.
Moore (Battlestar Galactica) will write the series and executive produce alongside Jim Kohlberg. The drama hails from Sony Pictures Television and is produced by Tall Ship Productions, Story Mining & Supply Co. and Left Bank Pictures.
Heughan's credits include Doctors, River City and Island at War. He's repped by UTA and United Artists.