‘Yellowstone’: Why Ryan Bingham Had ‘Compassion for Everyone’ on Set During Grizzly Bear Scene

by Courtney Blackann

If your instincts are to turn the opposite way and run when a massive grizzly bear is present, then you’re not unlike the horses on set of “Yellowstone.” Actor Ryan Bingham opens up about the scene where a grizzly is supposed to have been bullying the ranch and its surrounding areas. And while the actors were relaxed, the horses had other instincts.

Speaking in an interview with the L.A. Times, Bingham shares details about filming that day. No one was in any danger. But the horses on the ranch can’t distinguish the difference between acting and real-life – and they were not thrilled a grizzly bear was nearby.

“Their natural instincts when they smell the grizzly bear is to turn and run the other direction,” Bingham begins.  “To see all the cast, trying to hang on to these horses that are trying to run the other way …,” Bingham says, laughing. “I had a lot of compassion for everyone on the set that day.”

The “Yellowstone” actor and Oscar-winning songwriter has a lot of history with horses. He grew up with them while working on ranches and competing in rodeos. And his compassion for the animals comes naturally to the cowboy.

Ryan Bingham and the Music of “Yellowstone”

When he’s not busy filming “Yellowstone” as the sad, yet poetic cowboy that is Walker, Bingham works on his music. He’s constantly writing songs and coming up with new ideas. In his discussion with show creator Taylor Sheridan, Bingham also recalls that Sheridan gave him a lot of freedom to get creative with the music used for the show.

“I’d get on set and it would sink in the reality of what’s going on and the mood of what your guys’ characters are going through and what I’m feeling right now. And I could take that to Taylor and say, ‘You know, what do you think about this?’ I think that makes it a little more fun, a bit more creative, you know, like you can at least try it.”

And as fans know, Walker is generally not singing something really cheery. His character has suffered a lot of tragedy and loss. This includes a manslaughter charge that won’t allow him to leave Montana. After trying twice to leave the Yellowstone, Walker finds himself right back on the ranch. This happens early in season four when Rip Wheeler spots the cowboy singing at a local watering hole. He and Lloyd (Forrie J. Smith) inevitably drag the cowboy back to Kayce and let him decide.

Ultimately, Walker decides that he has to accept his fate. He dedicates – and proves – himself when he cuts the ‘Y’ off the chest of one of John Dutton’s enemies. And Walker’s story is far from over. We can’t wait to see what season five has in store for the saddest cowboy around.