‘1883’: MTV Entertainment Boss Says Prequel Will Help Make ‘Yellowstone’ Even Bigger

by Taylor Cunningham

Get ready Yellowstone fans, 1883 premieres in only 31 days. It will be the first addition to the expanding franchise. And it promises to make Yellowstone even better.

Taylor Sheridan’s Yellowstone seems to be breaking small-screen records every week. And with Sheridan bringing two more series into the Dutton universe, the drama won’t be losing steam any time soon.

The countdown has already begun for the premiere of the first spinoff, 1883. The opener drops on December 19th. And with the anticipation almost palpable, Chris McCarthy, President and CEO of MTV Entertainment Group, sat down with Deadline to share some insight.

“[1883 is] such a wonderful story,” he said. “If you are a Yellowstone fan, you will love it.”

Enough said. Any series that explains how John Dutton got his hands on over 200k acres of land in Big Sky country sounds great to us.

But you don’t have to follow Yellowstone to love its upcoming spinoff. The plot of 1883 won’t rely on John Dutton’s story.

“If you are not a Yellowstone fan, it’s the epic story about how America went West,” McCarthy shared. “You can enter it as a brand new viewer. That’s why we are confident that the series will bring a wider net, bringing new audiences, setting a bigger foundation for the Yellowstone universe.”

‘1883’ Will Explain How John Dutton Came to Own the Largest Cattle Ranch in the United States

For those of you who “are not Yellowstone fans” (yet), let us help you familiarize yourselves with the series.

Taylor Sheridan’s Yellowstone is a modern frontier drama that follows the Dutton family. The Duttons, who are led by Kevin Costner’s John Dutton, own the largest ranch in the United States. The land is constantly under threat by land grabs because backward politicians and billionaires see money signs when they look at the wide-open space. But John is determined to keep the ranch—in its entirety—within the family, despite all threats of financial and physical harm.

The new series, which stars Faith Hill and Tim Mcgraw, will explain how the Duttons came to own their giant cattle ranch.

“That’s the sole reason why we decided to do the origin story, 1883, which takes us back to the beginning,” McCarthy said.

The story will, unsurprisingly, begin in 1883, when an earlier generation of Duttons set out on a journey through the Great Plains as they headed towards Montana. The series is rumored to highlight the ugliness of extreme poverty while the Duttons seek the American dream in the untamed west.

Season 1 of 1883 Premieres Sunday, December 19, on Paramount+