‘1883’ Star Isabel May Opens Up About How Hands-On Taylor Sheridan Is

by Leanne Stahulak

As one of the most central characters in “1883,” Elsa Dutton (Isabel May) received some special attention from creator Taylor Sheridan.

“1883” belongs to the growing universe that Sheridan is cultivating, which began with “Yellowstone” four years ago. Now, he has up to 14 projects in the work (not all in the Sheridan-verse), per The Hollywood Reporter. The outlet sat down with May earlier this week to discuss her time on the show so far.

Specifically, the outlet asked if Sheridan ever has time to work with May on her character and understanding the world of “1883” in general. But May insisted that Sheridan cares about this project quite a bit, especially her character.

“That’s probably the greatest thing about this project. It’s Taylor’s baby, and I don’t think people understand how much it means to him,” May explained. “I certainly don’t want to speak on his behalf, but he’s expressed that. So he spent pretty much the entire time on this project.”

While “Yellowstone” is a cooperative effort, “1883” is something Sheridan built from the ground up. He exclusively wrote the story and script, while also having a hand in directing and producing. And according to May, at times Sheridan was even more involved than that.

‘1883’ Creator Taylor Sheridan Paid Special Attention to Elsa Dutton Character

“He was on set almost every day. He was in constant communication. We were shooting at his house — not inside of his house, obviously — but in his backyard,” May revealed. “He owns all of the land that we were shooting on in Texas, and then we moved to Montana and all around.”

Sheridan and a group of investors recently purchased the Four-Sixes Ranch, which is already a decent-sized chunk of land in West Texas. May didn’t specify if they filmed on that property or other property in Texas that Sheridan happened to own.

But aside from the easy commute for Sheridan, the “1883” star confirmed that he did care about connecting with May over her character. Elsa plays a key role as the narrator of the story. We see this harsh world through her 17-year-old eyes, which have already seen death and suffering on the way to Oregon.

“But he was always accessible and he still is always accessible,” May said of Sheridan’s involvement. “He cares deeply for this project, Elsa in particular, so I got very, very lucky on that end. His attention is a precious thing because he’s the busiest man I’ve ever met in my life.”

That’s an understatement. “1883” just finished filming, so now Sheridan and crew have to focus on post-production. In addition to that, he’s also working on the “Yellowstone” spin-off “6666” and other key projects.