Yellowstone co-creator and writer Taylor Sheridan opens up about the show's ending and his planned sequel for the first time in a new interview, revealing that his vision for the new show is different than what's been reported.

Talking to the Hollywood Reporter, Sheridan says he's only got "the broadest strokes" of a planned sequel to Yellowstone worked out, despite Paramount's announcement that the sequel would begin airing directly after Yellowstone wraps at the end of 2023. Both shows will probably face delays due to the Hollywood writers strike, and Matthew McConaughey is in "late-stage negotiations" to head up the new program, THR reports.

“He seems like a natural fit,” Sheridan states. “We had a few conversations over the years, and spitballed a few ideas. Then he started watching Yellowstone and responded to it. He was like, ‘I want to do that.’ And by ‘that’ he meant diving into a raw world clashing up against the modern world. And then I said, ‘Buddy, that we can do.’“

Reports have suggested that several of the main characters from Yellowstone might join McConaughey in the new show, which will also have the word "Yellowstone" in the title, but Sheridan tells THR, “My idea of a spinoff is the same as my idea of a prequel — read into that what you will.”

“There are lots of places where a way of life that existed for 150 years is slamming against a new way of life, but the challenges are completely different," he adds. "There are a lot of places you can tell this story.”

Sheridan downplays reports of tension with Yellowstone star Kevin Costner, who's been in a public standoff with Yellowstone producers since February amid debate about his shooting schedule for the second half of Season 5. It conflicts with another projct of his titled Horizon, which he is directing, producing and starring in, and Sheridan is philosophical about the fact that the situation is forcing him to bring the character to an early close. Costner's John Dutton character will reportedly die early in the new episodes, and the rest of the season will deal with the aftermath of that.

“My last conversation with Kevin was that he had this passion project he wanted to direct. He and the network were arguing about when he could be done with Yellowstone. I said, ‘We can certainly work a schedule toward [Costner's departure],’ which we did," he shares.

“My opinion of Kevin as an actor hasn’t altered,” Sheridan adds. “His creation of John Dutton is symbolic and powerful … and I’ve never had an issue with Kevin that he and I couldn’t work out on the phone. But once lawyers get involved, then people don’t get to talk to each other and start saying things that aren’t true and attempt to shift blame based on how the press or public seem to be reacting. He took a lot of this on the chin, and I don’t know that anyone deserves it. His movie seems to be a great priority to him, and he wants to shift focus. I sure hope [Horizon is] worth it — and that it’s a good one."

As part of Taste of Country's comprehensive coverage of all things Yellowstone, check out our Dutton Rules podcast on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

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