Richard was born in Rutherglen, Glasgow, on 4 January 1983, his birth name actually being Richard Harris. It was changed to Rankin, his mother’s maiden name, to avoid any confusion with the famous Irish actor. Initially wanting to be an IT professional, he was inspired by a trip to Los Angeles at the age of 21 to train as an actor the following year.
Richard first attracted attention in the Scottish comedy series ‘Burnistoun’, shown regionally, and toured worldwide in the Olivier Award winning play, ‘Black Watch’, for the National Theatre of Scotland. It was his iconic role as Capt. Thomas Gillan in ‘The Crimson Field’ that led to other strong performances on national television such as, ‘Silent Witness’, ‘The Syndicate’, ‘From Darkness’, and ‘Thirteen’ for the BBC. In 2016, Richard will make his debut as the pivotal character of Roger Wakefield in the STARZ/Sony epic production, ‘Outlander’, a role that will showcase his tremendous emotional power as an actor to an international audience.