OutlanderBTS: Where Are They Now, 2

Photo: Director Philip John with Caitriona on location at Kinloch Rannoch during filming of the Season 2 finale, Dragonfly In Amber, February, 2016

I started this OutlanderBTS: Where Are They Now series recently, with a post about the lovely Stephen Walters, Colin MacFarlane, Keith (Kiki) Fleming, and Adrienne Zitt. It was very well received, so I’m bringing you this next one, right quick. Let’s catch up with some more cast and crew…


Philip John: (Director, Season 2)

Last Seen in Outlander: Episode 213, Dragonfly In Amber

Photo: Philip John

In my time as a blogger for the screen adaptation of Outlander, I’ve come to realize just how critical a good director is in the making of a great episode. When looking back at my favorite (or least favorite) episodes over the past five seasons, a pattern generally emerges. One of my favorite episodes will always be Dragonfly In Amber, written by Toni and Matt, and directed by this award winning, Welsh director, Philip John. Directors are basically responsible for the translation of the script into an episode. I would imagine that entails a lot, especially these days, with Covid-19 restrictions! Directors are also responsible for the first edit, or the “director’s cut” for each episode they direct. In television, the Executive Showrunner (was Ron, now Matt) has the final say regarding what stays and what goes (in film, the director has the final say). Philip directed several episodes in Season 2: Je Suis Prest, Prestonpans, The Hail Mary, and the finale of the season.

Last seen:

Photo: Philip John, masked up on the job, 2021

What’s he up to now? 

Before his work on Outlander, Philip directed six episodes of Downton Abbey, and he was nominated for awards for his work on Being Human. Since Outlander Season 2, he’s kept plenty busy, directing episodes for multiple series of TV, such as: The Halcyon, Lucky Man, Iron Fist, and Cloak & Dagger. He directed twelve episodes for the Welsh crime drama, Bang, and he told me in September of 2019, that he was “Loving it.” 

I caught up with him recently to find out what he’s been up to lately, and he said, 

“Since April I’ve been adapting an Indian novel, The Arrangements of Love, to shoot as a movie next year. Then I shot a new Scottish marine crime drama called Annika, with Nicola Walker and Jamie Sives. Now I have just started working on season four of Good Karma Hospital, to be shot in Sri Lanka. So lucky to be busy.”

He directed three episodes from Season 3 of The Good Karma Hospital as well. 

Will we see Philip again in Outlander?

Directors seem to work on one season of Outlander, maaaybe two. It’s likely a matter of coinciding schedules – as directors take new jobs in between seasons. I would love to see Philip do more episodes of Outlander



5 comments on “OutlanderBTS: Where Are They Now, 2

  1. Thank you for this posting … especially Philip John!! I am thrilled to know he is directing The Good Karma Hospital … I didn’t realize that he’d directed the series previously. The Good Karma Hospital is a hidden gem! Amanda Redman is a revelation … though all the acting is outstanding. Watched on Acorn … a little further than Britbox… Irish, Aussie, Kiwi, etc. (NZ 800 Words another quirky find). But to your lovely post … I’ve been casually following the directors of Outlander … some of whom I thought were exception (fondness for European over Brit). Excited for new directors this season- Call the Midwife alums: Kate Cheesman (who started off as a film editor which should be a boon for Outlander) and Christiana Ebohon-Green!! Truth be told – I am NOT a fan of Jamie Payne … but you never can tell if its the director or the showrunner…

    • Thank you! I am going to check out Acorn – sounds like a goldmine. Thanks for your reflections on directors. I’d like to hear more about why you don’t care for Jamie Payne’s work too! x

  2. You have a talent for getting to the meat of an interview and asking just the right questions! Thanks, Courtney.

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