HomeEntertainmentTVYellowstone‘Yellowstone’ to hit basic cable on CBS this fall

‘Yellowstone’ to hit basic cable on CBS this fall

by Jon D. B.
Yellowstone coming to CBS
Kevin Costner as John Dutton in Yellowstone Season 1. (Photo courtesy of Paramount Network)

CBS’ new deal will make Yellowstone more accessible than ever as it airs on the network, starting with Season 1, in fall of 2023.

According to CBS, Yellowstone will be making its broadcast debut with their fall schedule this year. The surprise acquisition comes amid ongoing SAG-AFTRA writers’ and actors’ strikes; both preventing new seasons of scripted television shows. In kind, CBS, which falls under the Paramount Global network, is bringing in the big guns to help fill some sizable gaps.

The CBS run will begin with Yellowstone Season 1, which initially premiered on Paramount Network (a premium cable channel) in June of 2018. Now, homes with basic cable packages will be able to watch the show without subscribing to that premium channel or streaming services for the first time.

There’s no word on a premiere date for Yellowstone‘s CBS run yet, but we do know it will air on Sundays as it did on Paramount Network.

Per TV Guide, CBS’ fall TV schedule will run Yellowstone as follows:

CBS fall TV 2023 Sunday night schedule (NFL singleheader weeks)
7 p.m.: 60 Minutes
8 p.m.: Yellowstone (two episodes)
10 p.m.: Big Brother

CBS fall TV 2023 Sunday night schedule (NFL doubleheader weeks)
7:30 p.m.: 60 Minutes
9 p.m.: Yellowstone
10 p.m.: Big Brother

Another fan favorite show, SEAL Team, finished filming ahead of the SAG-AFTRA strikes and will also return to CBS this fall. Yellowstone will replace CBS’ The Equalizer in its previous spot and will “lead” their 2023 fall lineup.

“It’s not entirely clear how CBS managed to find a way for the Montana-set series, which streams on Peacock, to air on its network,” Deadline comments on the surprise move. “But insiders said that given it comes from sister company MTV Entertainment Studios, which produces with 101 Studios, it was able to be worked out.”

There’s an easy answer here, however. The current parent company of CBS is Paramount Global, formed in late 2019 as ViacomCBS Inc. And as any Dutton die-hard knows, the Paramount in Paramount Global and Yellowstone‘s Paramount Network are indeed one and the same.

As for Yellowstone still streaming on Peacock (NBC), that’s due to Paramount selling the streaming rights to NBC many years ago before the show was the #1 scripted offering across cable. And yes, Paramount execs are still kicking themselves over this.

So much so, in fact, that it impacted the decision to let Yellowstone end with Season 5 instead of having it continue on without Kevin Costner.

‘Yellowstone’s re-route to a ‘direct sequel’ allows for Paramount to fully own the future of their franchise

With Costner walking away from the franchise, Taylor Sheridan and Paramount have been forced to wrap up their flagship series with Season 5. This is a blessing in disguise for the studio, however.

Instead of continuing Yellowstone without its main character, Paramount (and Sheridan, presumably) are choosing to let that modern Montana/Dutton storyline end, then replace it with a sequel. And once they do, they’ll be able to stream all of their upcoming/new Yellowstone Universe shows on their streaming platform, Paramount+, together.

Yellowstone proper will still be absent, though. NBC will own the streaming rights until they decide to sell them back to Paramount, which is on the “hell freezing over” scale. But who knows. We did get a “Hell Freezes Over” tour from the Eagles.

For more on how this direct sequel is shaping up, see our ‘Yellowstone’ Sequel Greenlit: Everything we know via Paramount next.