The Game Of Thrones actor stars with Caitriona Balfe in the TV series based on the romantic novels by Diana Gabaldon, about married World War II nurse Claire Beauchamp who finds herself transported back in time to Scotland in 1743. Tobias plays both Claire’s husband Frank in the 1940s and villain Jonathan ‘Black Jack’ Randall in the 18th-century scenes.
Tobias as Frank in the 1940s with Caitriona as Claire (Amazon Prime Instant Video)
He revealed: “It’s been an absolute blast. It’s been challenging but really rewarding, two really great characters that Diana has written, having real fun juxtaposing them, having real fun with the fact it’s the same actor playing both. There are moments where they become quite similar and moments they are very different.”
Tobias insisted it is not quite as simple as Frank being good and Jack being bad.
He explained: “We’ve tried to complicate it a bit as we’ve gone into the season, in one episode we investigate Jack’s psychology and make it a little more grey and a little more nuanced, and in episode eight we see maybe a little bit of Jack in Frank. It’s been fun making them as three-dimensional as we can.”
Caitriona admitted it is very different acting opposite Tobias as two different characters.
Tobias Menzies plays Jack Black in Outlander (Amazon Prime Instant Video)
She revealed: “It’s quite strange, he’s so charming and sweet as Frank and so not as Jack! But it’s amazing to watch his transformation. He just inhabits both of those characters so well.
“Our first couple of weeks filming it was all Claire and Frank, the sun was shining in Glasgow those weeks and we were driving around in this amazing vintage car, and it was lovely.
“And the first day we went to shoot as Black Jack, it was raining and he was very sullen and quiet off in the corner and I was like, ‘OK’!”
(Amazon Prime Instant Video)
As for the changing costumes, Tobias admits he prefers Jack’s military uniform of the 1740s, even if he does have to wear a wig.
He said: “The costuming is wonderful, but it’s hard to beat a red coat.
“There is a wig involved… It’s incredibly difficult my job, it’s very challenging,” he joked.
“No, I have a very good wig woman and she does it very well, so it’s not too unconformable. Don’t go worrying about me.”
The first eight episodes of Outlander are available on Amazon’s Prime Instant Video. The remaining episodes will launch every Sunday from 5 April.