‘Yellowstone’ Prequel ‘1883’ Announces New Cast Members as Production Begins
A new show that tells the backstory of the Dutton clan from Yellowstone is getting closer to becoming reality. The upcoming Yellowstone prequel, 1883, has begun shooting in Texas, and the show has revealed two more cast members as anticipation builds toward its fall release date.
1883 stars Tim McGraw and Faith Hill as Dutton family patriarch James and matriarch Margaret, and it follows their family as they travel west on a difficult journey from Texas to Montana, where they will end up establishing the Yellowstone ranch that serves as the setting for the runaway hit show on Paramount Network. Their characters are the great-grandparents of Kevin Costner's character, John Dutton, who owns the largest contiguous cattle ranch in the United States and rules it with an iron fist.
As Deadline reports, Yellowstone creator Taylor Sheridan wrote all of the scripts for the initial 10-episode first season, and he's also directing the pilot episode of 1883. He's announced the addition of Isabel May (Alexa & Katie), who will play the role of James and Margaret Dutton's oldest daughter, Elsa. Her character will provide much of the show's perspective on the journey the family makes by wagon with a number of other families headed west.
LaMonica Garrett (Designated Survivor, Sons of Anarchy) has also joined 1883 to portray the assistant to Pinkerton agent Shea Brennan (Sam Elliott).
Deadline reports that production on 1883 commenced in Fort Worth, Texas, on Monday (Aug. 23), and that the budgets for the show are even bigger than those for Yellowstone, since they have to film on a grand visual scale. The production calls for 30 actual wagon trains that the cameras will follow as they travel, and producers also had to build an entire town to the architecture of the 1880s, as well as recreate authentic guns, saddles, wardrobe and virtually every other piece of physical material that will appear onscreen.
It's all in service to the authenticity of the piece, which Sheridan wants to film like a "10-hour movie."
“What’s beautiful about the story is, it’s a time we’ve forgotten, what a family would do to find a place to settle, and the risks and trials and tribulations of what people went through," 101 Studios CEO David Glasser tells Deadline. "These are real struggles, about people dying along the way, in search of a better future for their families. The core of the story is always family, and you see the innocent perspective of the daughter Elsa, and through Faith’s eyes, and through the eyes of the father, played by Tim, and this incredible character Shea, played by Sam Elliott. He’s seen it all and might be on his last journey. There is something that happens that explains each character’s reason for leaving to build a new life. The world Taylor has created is magic.”
The Paramount Network has announced that 1883 will premiere on Dec. 19 via their streaming service, Paramount+. Subscribe to the streaming service to make sure you don't miss out.