‘1883’ Star Tim McGraw Opens Up About Tom Hanks Joining the Show

by Suzanne Halliburton
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Lester Cohen/WireImage

So 1883 fans have Tim McGraw to thank for Tom Hanks making a cameo in this much-anticipated show.

May we say bravo to this country superstar who used his connections to entice Hanks, the two-time Oscar winner to make an appearance in the fledgling streaming series? Of course, we’re thinking Hanks also took into consideration that Taylor Sheridan, an Academy Award nominee, created this majestic prequel to Yellowstone.

McGraw relayed the story of how the Hanks appearance happened as he discussed all things 1883 with USA Today. Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, are couples friends with McGraw and his wife, Faith Hill. And Hill also stars in 1883.

“Tom and Rita and Faith and I have been friends for a really long time,” McGraw told USA Today. “We’ve tried to do some things together that never worked out. So when this little cameo was there I called him up and said, ‘There’s this cool part…I hate to ask, but…’ and he said, ‘I’m in. Tell me when and where and I’ll be there.’ The emotion in that scene was pretty authentic.”

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Hanks Appears In 1883 Flashback to Bloody Civil War Battle

The scene comes in episode two of 1883. It’s called Behind Us, A Cliff. And here’s the episode summary provided by 1883:

Thomas and Shea recruit James and some local cowboys to corral a herd of cattle. As they begin their journey, the caravan is confronted with some of the many dangers they will face along the way.

Paramount+ drops the first two episodes of 1883 this Sunday, Dec. 19. So fans are in luck. They don’t have to wait to check out Hanks together with McGraw. And yes, although we haven’t seen the episode, we do know that Hanks and McGraw are together for at least a scene. We’ll explain.

James Dutton, McGraw’s character, was a young officer in the Confederate Army. In an interview earlier this week with Outsider, McGraw said James “was in a war he didn’t want to fight and (in) battles where he lost all his men.”

McGraw, Hanks Are In Recreation of Battle of Antietam

So a certain pivotal scene that explains James’ backstory is told in flashback. And 1883 throws it back to the Battle Of Antietam. It’s 2021 and that Civil War battle still stands as the bloodiest day in U.S. military history. The battle began Sept. 17, 1862. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia fought against Union Gen. George McClellan’s Army of the Potomac. This particular battle unfolded near Antietam Creek outside Sharpsburg, Maryland.

In sneak peeks, we know that James picks himself up off the ground. He’s stunned as he surveys a landscape dominated by dead or dying bodies. Sheridan likes to be precise in his violent imagery, so James likely is overwhelmed by the carnage. More than 22,000 men died or were injured during the battle.

James feels a gloved hand on his shoulder. It’s Hanks, dressed in a Union uniform. And Hanks is portraying Gen. George Meade. In a roundtable interview with Outsider, McGraw said James spent three years in prison during the Civil War. So this might be the scene that makes him a POW.

Outsider.com