Taylor Sheridan’s Yellowstone prequel series 1883 just added a major star to its cast with Billy Bob Thornton. The Sling Blade and Goliath actor will step onto the series as a guest star and will play Marshal Jim Courtright. The series launches on Paramount+ on Sunday, December 19. The series already includes cast members Sam Elliott, Tim McGraw, and Faith Hill.
The prequel, titled 1883, will follow the Dutton family as “they embark on a journey west through the Great Plains toward the last bastion of untamed America. It is a stark retelling of Western expansion, and an intense study of one family fleeing poverty to seek a better future in America’s promised land – Montana.” The original Yellowstone series follows “the Dutton family, led by John Dutton (Kevin Costner), who controls the largest contiguous ranch in the United States. The ranch is under constant attack by those it borders—land developers, an Indian reservation, and the United States of America’s first National Park. It is an intense study of a violent world far from media scrutiny, where land grabs earn developers billions, and politicians are bought and sold by the world’s largest oil and lumber corporations. Where unsolved murders are not news, they are a consequence of living in the new frontier. It is the best and worst of the United States as seen through the eyes of a family that represents both.”
Thornton recently completed work on the fourth season of his Amazon series Goliath. He’s also set to star in The Gray Man for Joe and Anthony Russo. The story for that project takes place in Europe, where a CIA operative-turned-assassin looks to evade mysterious forces as he tries to save the lives of the daughters who don’t know he exists. Starring alongside Thornton in The Gray Man is Ana de Armas, Chris Evans, Jessica Henwick, Ryan Gosling, Alfre Woodard, and Regé-Jean Page.
Another project that Thornton is currently attached to is Where All Light Tends to Go. Directed by Ben Young (Hounds of Love, Extinction) the story is set in North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains, where eighteen-year-old Jacob McNeely is torn between appeasing his meth-dealing kingpin father and leaving the mountains forever with the girl he loves. Joining Thornton for the drama is Robin Wright and Hopper Penn.