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Outlander shares incredibly exciting news on prequel series ahead of season six

Starz will expand the world of Outlander with a brand new prequel series

outlander prequel
Eve Crosbie
TV & Film Writer
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It looks like Outlander is heading back to the Highlands! It's been revealed that the bosses behind the hugely successful drama are working on a new prequel series.

MORE: Outlander star Sam Heughan defends co-star Caitríona Balfe after fan criticism

While Starz have yet to officially confirm the new spinoff is in the works, Variety reports that a writers' room is currently being assembled and pre-production on the show will begin in the coming weeks. Matthew B. Roberts, who serves as showrunner on the main series, will take the helm as writer and executive producer, alongside Maril Davis and Ronald D. Moore, who developed the novels of Diana Gabaldon for television.

WATCH: Are you looking forward to Outlander season six?

Exact details on what the untitled spinoff will be about are being kept under wraps for now, but it's expected that the series will expand the sprawling world of Outlander. As it is being dubbed a 'prequel', it seems likely that the show will focus on the Fraser family and their life in Scotland before Claire stumbled across Craigh Na Dun and travelled back to the year 1743.

MORE: 9 brilliant time travel shows to watch if you love Outlander

MORE: Outlander's Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe's spark sizzles off the screen in unearthed throwback clip

Rumours about a prequel first began to swirl last summer, and more recently, the author of the books that the series is based on has shared an update on her own project about Jamie Fraser's parents.

Earlier this month, Diana shared with her fans on Facebook the potential opening line of the book, which will tell the story of Jamie's parents, Ellen and Brian Fraser. She has been working on the novel over the last few years, alongside the tenth instalment in the Outlander series.

sam heughan© Starz

The series is being dubbed a 'prequel' and most likely explore Jamie's family life before 1743

Alongside a photo of some red ivy trailing down a terracotta wall, she wrote: "And it is only a line - but I think it's possibly the first line of the book:

"'Ellen MacKenzie, eldest of the children of Jacob Ruadh MacKenzie, chief of Clan MacKenzie—well, the late chief, if only by moments, but she'd think about that later—grabbed Ailidh Watt from behind and dragged her out of sight, clapping a hand over her slobbering mouth to stifle her cries.'"

She added that while she has "barely begun" working on the new novel, she has "more written" but will not be posting more for some time. 

MORE: Six questions we need answering in Outlander season six

The exciting news comes ahead of the release of Outlander's highly-anticipated sixth season, which will premiere on Starz Play on Sunday 6 March 2022. It's expected that the new season - which will have a shorter run of just eight episodes - will pick up shortly after the traumatising events of season five. 

When viewers last saw Claire, played by Caitriona Balfe, she had returned to Fraser's Ridge after escaping a violent encounter with Lionel Brown and Sam Heughan's Jamie was facing the threat of a looming Revolutionary War coming to Fraser's Ridge.

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