What a Gem: ‘Yellowstone’s Kelly Reilly Grew Up Watching Westerns… In London

by Jon D. B.
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Growing up, Kelly Reilly fell in love with “this faraway world of Americana” early on; something Yellowstone brings full circle for the actor.

If it feels like the world is still a little too obsessed with Kelly Reilly being very British, it’s because she’s so utterly convincing as Beth Dutton. When the Dutton daughter is on our screens, she is a ruthless, loyal, and love-til-you-die Montanan heiress and nothing else. Not a hint of Reilly’s own English origins sneak into cameras. Beth is Beth, and Kelly is Kelly.

Yet the more we learn about the actor, the more it makes sense that a London theatre vet could become one of the best characters to ever grace an American Western, period.

“Well, when I first wanted to become an actor, I never thought about movies, or TV even,” Reilly reveals in the recent Dutton Family Interview on set for Yellowstone Season 5.

She was a tried-and-true thespian, indeed. “It was purely about the theatre. That’s where the beginning of my career started. And that’s where I lived for about 15 years before doing anything else.”

From ‘Dallas’ and ‘Dynasty’ to ‘Yellowstone’

Before that, however, a young Kelly Reilly was indulging in an artform that would – unknowingly – prepare her for the role of her lifetime.

“But I did watch Dallas and Dynasty, or Die-nas-tee, I don’t know how you guys say it, with my mom, in South London in our house,” Reilly smiles wide. “And this faraway world of Americana and, of course, the culture of American movies I was always in love with,” she doubles down.

“But did I ever think I’d be doing this? Never! Never. Telling my eleven-year-old-self this would be something,” she grins. “But yeah, I feel blessed to be invited into this world with these American actors.”

Two of those American actors have impressive histories with the culture that influenced Yellowstone: Kevin Costner and Cole Hauser. This surely helps when you’re having to immerse yourself into a world as unique and brutally-authentic as the American West. Fittingly, there was quite a bit of healthy intimidation for Reilly to overcome at first.

“Sometimes, like in the first season, I tried to hide my accent or just not talk to anyone [off-screen], ’cause I didn’t want them to know,” she motions to staunch laughter from her castmates.

“But now, they’ve embraced me and taken me on,” she smiles wide. So, too, has the rest of America, who can’t get enough of her Beth Dutton. And more is on the way come November 13 for Yellowstone Season 5 on Paramount Network. Watch Reilly’s portion of the 30-minute interview at the timestamp below.

Jun 20, 2022: Luke Grimes, Kelsey Asbille, Kevin Costner, Kelly Reilly, and Cole Hauser sit down with The Hollywood Reporter‘s Scott Feinberg to discuss all things Yellowstone from the Chief Joseph Ranch in Darby, Montana.

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