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Outlander star Caitríona Balfe addresses potential return to show after season 8 ending

The Irish star said 'never say never'

Caitriona Balfe returns as Claire
Nicky Morris
Nicky MorrisTV and film writer
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Outlander star Caitríona Balfe has said "never say never" to revisiting her character, Claire Fraser, after the show's eighth and final season

Speaking to Decider, the Irish actress reacted to executive producer Maril Davis' suggestion that the show could return after author Diana Gabaldon finishes the book series. 

Caitriona Balfe as Claire Fraser
Caitriona said 'never say never' to a future show comeback

"I mean, if it was just up to Maril Davis, I would love to see this through to the end of the book series," said Maril. 

Explaining that a key issue is that the show's storyline is catching up with Diana's book series, Maril continued: "It would entail us now going on pause, waiting for her to write that book. Is that three years? Is it four years? I don’t know. I think sometime it has to end. Is this a good time? I'm sure."

READ: Outlander season 7 episode one recap: what are the men playing at?!

MORE: Outlander star Caitríona Balfe reveals why she and co-star Sam Heughan spend less time together off-camera

She went on to say that while she would have "loved to have continued", she's open to concluding the story at some point in the future. 

Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe in Outlander season seven© James Minchin
Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe as Jamie and Claire Fraser

"Maybe we'll do a different iteration in the future. You know, maybe we'll come back and tell the end of the story. I mean, we'll have to end it in some way. But you know, the story will obviously still continue in the books."

Speaking about the drama drawing to a close with season eight, Caitríona said: "It's been such a privilege and such an honor to spend that much time playing these characters, but I think it's also time for us to try new challenges and to have new experiences."

Sam Heughan in Outlander season seven
Season seven premiered on June 16

In response to Maril's idea of a future comeback, the 43-year-old said: "I think you never say never. The door's always open so we'll see."

WATCH: Outlander stars share reaction to show ending with season eight

The seventh season of the historical drama premiered on Friday 16 June and while fans are delighted to have the show back on their screens, they may be waiting a little longer for the release of season eight. 

In a new interview, Caitríona revealed that while filming for the final series was due to begin in a few months' time, the ongoing writers' strike in Hollywood has resulted in a delay. 

Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe in Outlander© Starz!/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock
Season eight will be the show's last

When asked to reveal the start date for shooting the new episodes, she responded: "Well, we had a date. And now with the writers' strike, who knows? So we have to just wait and see.

"That's obviously a big thing that's going on at the moment stateside and that may change things. But you know, it's too early to start speculating about that," she told RadioTimes.com.

The seventh season of Outlander premieres on June 16 © Robert Wilson
Filming for season eight has been delayed

While fans will be sorry to say farewell to the popular drama, they can look forward to a new spin-off series, Outlander: Blood of My Blood, which will delve into the relationship between Jamie's parents, Brian and Ellen.

The 26-episode prequel will "explore what lengths a person will go to find love in a time when love is considered a luxury, and when marriages are made strategically, often for political or financial gain," the synopsis teases.

Outlander is available to stream on LIONSGATE+ in the UK and STARZ in US.