Richard Rankin

Last updated on the 13 June 2024 by Evandrus

Richard Rankin headshot

Mini Biography

Born: 4 January 1983, Rutherglen, Scotland. 

Richard Rankin, the son of a police officer and a hotel industry worker, a young Rankin envisioned a future in the sciences or Information Technology. However, a life-altering trip to Los Angeles at the age of 21 sparked a passion for acting, leading him to pursue professional training the following year.

Rankin’s early career was learnt on the Scottish stage. He found success in the sketch show “Burnistoun,” displaying his comedic timing and ability to embody diverse characters. This experience was further bolstered by his participation in the Olivier Award-winning play “Black Watch” with the National Theatre of Scotland. The play, which explored the experiences of Scottish soldiers in Iraq, provided Rankin with a platform to showcase his dramatic range.

A pivotal moment arrived in 2014 with the miniseries “The Crimson Field.” Rankin’s portrayal of the courageous Captain Thomas Gillan garnered him national attention. This success opened doors to prominent roles in various BBC productions, including the crime drama “Silent Witness,” the lottery-themed series “The Syndicate,” and the psychological thriller “Thirteen.”

Richard Rankin, Caitríona Balfe and Sophie Skelton in Outlander
Richard Rankin, Caitríona Balfe and Sophie Skelton in Outlander

In 2016, Rankin landed the role that would propel him to international recognition: Roger Wakefield in the Starz drama “Outlander.” Based on Diana Gabaldon’s novels, “Outlander” follows Claire Randall, a 20th-century nurse who travels back in time to 18th-century Scotland. Roger, a historian searching for his ancestors, becomes romantically entangled with Claire and her highlander husband, Jamie Fraser. Rankin’s portrayal of Roger, a man grappling with displacement and love in a bygone era, resonated with audiences worldwide. The role not only earned him critical acclaim but also solidified his place as a leading man in television.

Richard Rankin as DS John Rebus
Richard Rankin as DS John Rebus

In a casting coup, 2023 saw Richard Rankin land the iconic role of Detective Sergeant John Rebus in a new adaptation of Ian Rankin’s novels.

Richard Rankin is an active social media user, he offers glimpses into his love for board games, reading and the occasional indulgence in pizza. A self-proclaimed thrill-seeker, he enjoys climbing and embraces challenges. While not much is known about his romantic relationships, his on-screen chemistry with co-star Sophie Skelton in “Outlander” continues to capture the hearts of fans.


Suggested viewing


Rebus (2024)

Rebus poster

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 7.3

A gruff Edinburgh detective with a checkered past wrestles with a violent criminal underworld, all while a personal connection to the case throws his morals into question. This gritty reboot tackles complex crimes and hidden demons, offering a fresh take on a beloved literary character.

Top cast: Richard Rankin, Brian Ferguson, Lucie Shorthouse, Amy Manson, Stuart Bowman, Caroline Lee-Johnson, Noof Ousellam, Neshla Caplan, Thoren Ferguson, Aston McAuley, Michelle Duncan, Michelle Duncan, Sean Buchanan.

Similar to

Irvine Welsh's Crime


Outlander (2014)

Outlander - Richard Rankin poster

Bftv 9.0 / IMDb 8.4

Thrown back in time by mysterious stones, a 20th-century nurse finds herself entangled in 18th-century Scotland’s rebellion. Torn between her modern life and a passionate Highlander, she faces a world of danger and romance, forever altered by her time-travelling fate.

Top cast: Caitríona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Sophie Skelton, Richard Ranking, John Bell, Tobias Menzies, Graham McTavish, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Laura Donnelly, Bill Paterson, Duncan Lacroix.


Richard Rankin full filmography @ Wikipedia
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