‘Yellowstone’ Creator Taylor Sheridan on Being an ‘Advocate for the West’

by Thad Mitchell
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Taylor Sheridan, creator of the hit series “Yellowstone” is a busy man these days with many irons in many fires.

Sheridan and “Yellowstone” just wrapped up another successful season earlier this month. The fourth season of the series was a record-breaking victory for Sheridan and the show’s crew. The fourth season premiere alone saw more than 8 million viewers tune in and the ratings remained high also season. The show is up for numerous awards and has drawn rave reviews from both fans and critics. Sheridan doesn’t have much time to celebrate though as he has numerous projects in the works. One of those projects, “Yellowstone” prequel “1883,” is currently airing on Paramount Plus. Much like its sister show, “1883” has been a smash hit among western culture enthusiasts. Another “Yellowstone” spinoff, “6666” is also in the works and Sheridan says he’s excited to see how the Jefferson White-led series will turn out.

Western culture is a common theme in many of Sheridan’s works and he takes great pride in shining a light on the west. “Yellowstone” draws rave reviews for its portrayal of a modern cattle ranch and the struggles facing those who choose the cowboy lifestyle. Sheridan and White discuss this subject in a recent podcast interview.

“I try to be an advocate for the west,” Sheridan says in discussing his work. “I grew up in it and it is an incredible place and it’s changing like everything changes.”

The “Yellowstone” creator also notes that change is inevitable using his former home, New York, as an example.

“The west can’t migrate,” he says. “You build these places up and then that’s what they are. Whether we like it or not, we have to get our food from somewhere.”

‘Yellowstone’ Strives to Give Viewers a Taste of the West

Sheridan often speaks of the hard work that the “Yellowstone” cast and crew do to make scenes look “earned” when they appear on our screens. Before even shooting the very first “Yellowstone” scene, he made the actors go through a “cowboy school” of sorts. The goal was for the actors to look natural in performing cattle ranch activities. It certainly paid off as the show’s cast looks like they’ve been riding horses their whole lives.

“Because it is so hard, physically, on the actors, on the crew, I feel like the shots look earned,” he says in a Deadline interview. “And because Paramount trusts me and gives me the time to go shoot 10 to 14 days for a television episode, we can treat it like a movie. And it looks like a movie. We can take the time to rehearse it and light it and build these set pieces. And if I call them and say, I need two helicopters in one day, they just go, all right.”

Outsider.com