Joe Nichols Set to Make Movie Debut in Upcoming Western ‘Murder at Yellowstone City’

by Lauren Boisvert

Country music singer Joe Nichols is set to make his big screen debut in “Murder at Yellowstone City,” coming to select theaters and Prime Video on Friday, June 24. The film is a Western set in Montana in the 1860s; it stars Joe Nichols as Colin Hodge, son of a dirt farmer with a grandfather who defended the Alamo. Colin goes to Montana for gold, but when a mine collapses, he must recover in his tent on the edge of Yellowstone City. Unfortunately, he falls prey to alcohol and hard times.

The meat of the story centers around Yellowstone City, a declining western town. A newcomer arrives in town looking for a place to settle down; on the same day, someone murders a prospector after he finds gold.

The film is definitely keeping up with the current Western boom in America right now; shows like “Yellowstone,” “1883,” and “Outer Range” are all the rage at the moment. This is an interesting mix of Western and mystery genres, calling to mind “Murder on the Orient Express” blended with “1883.” The film also stars “Yellowstone” actress Tanaya Beatty, who portrayed Avery for a handful of episodes. Here, she’s playing a character called Violet Running Horse.

“Murder in Yellowstone City” also stars Gabriel Byrne, Thomas Jane, Isaiah Mustafa, Richard Dreyfuss, and Nat Wolff. Additionally, Anna Camp, Aimiee Garcia, Emma Kenney and Zach McGowan star as well. Eric Belgau wrote the script, and Richard Gray directed.

‘Murder in Yellowstone City’ Premieres June 24, Plus ‘Yellowstone’ Star Kevin Costner Explains Appeal of Western Genre

Kevin Costner is starring in one of the biggest Westerns on TV right now, “Yellowstone,” so he’s aware of what makes a good Western. America is clamoring for Westerns at the moment, can’t get enough of a romanticized retelling of our not so savory history, or a modern look at classic cowboy tropes. But, why is that? Kevin Costner has an idea, sort of.

“I don’t know,” he initially said when asked on ABC News about the appeal of the Western. But, then he continued, “There’s something appealing about the only things you have are your horse and the things you can carry. How can you do out there in the world?”

There’s definitely something appealing about having all you own in a backpack or a saddlebag. Traveling the open road, keeping journals, drinking coffee by a fire and sharing stories. There’s some innate yearning in us to see the world, to go out West, and the Western genre helps to sooth that longing. Kevin Costner said he doesn’t know why we’re so obsessed with Westerns, but I think he was right on the mark. We want to be out there, to see how we would fare in the wild, rabid West. That, I think, is the real American dream.