Headed down to Texas.
Yesterday, an absolute bombshell was dropped on Yellowstone fans as it was reported that Kevin Costner will be exiting the show and Yellowstone as we know it will be coming to an end.
A new series will eventually pick up where Yellowstone left off, and will feature Matthew McConaughey in the leading role to replace the hole left by Costner.
A number of stars from Yellowstone will also be featured in the new series, however it remains unclear which ones.
Costner is reportedly no longer on board with the filming schedule and asked to only shoot for a single week while filming the second half of Season 5. He is working on his own film called Horizon, in which he is starring, and will be directing, and that seems to be where he would like to spend his time.
“Sources tell Deadline that Costner, who had originally limited himself to 65 days of shooting on Yellowstone, only wanted to shoot for 50 days for the first part of the current season.
Paramount Network has declined Costner’s most recent proposal and instead has made the decision to move on to the other show.”
It’s not hard to see why that isn’t gonna work for Taylor Sheridan and Paramount Network, who have opted to move the show in a different direction.
Paramount has not confirmed anything, and I think it’s safe to say that none of these details are set in stone quite yet:
“We have no news to report. Kevin Costner is a big part of Yellowstone and we hope that’s the case for a long time to come. Thanks to the brilliant mind of Taylor Sheridan, we are always working on franchise expansions of this incredible world he has built.
Matthew McConaughey is a phenomenal talent with whom we’d love to partner.”
However, could this abrupt exit be setting the stage for the 6666 spinoff we’ve been promised?
I think so…
Back in February of 2021, before the insane amount of projects Taylor Sheridan is working on right now was ever revealed, it was announced that a Texas-based spinoff series was in the works, set at the iconic 6666’s Ranch in West, Texas.
The 6666’s Ranch was founded by Samuel “Burk” Burnett in 1870, when he bought 100 head of cattle branded with “6666” on them. These days, the property is a staggering 266,000 acres across three ranches: The 6666, the Frisco Creek and the Dixon Creek.
It was rumored to star Jefferson White as Jimmy Hurdstrom and Ryan Bingham as Walker, but other than that, there wasn’t much detail aside from this synopsis:
“Founded when Comanches still ruled West Texas, no ranch in America is more steeped in the history of the West than the 6666. Still operating as it did two centuries before, and encompassing an entire county, the 6666 is where the rule of law and the laws of nature merge in a place where the most dangerous thing one does is the next thing.
The 6666 is synonymous with the merciless endeavor to raise the finest horses and livestock in the world, and ultimately where world class cowboys are born and made.”
But then, Taylor Sheridan bought the actual ranch…
Taylor Sheridan Acquires The 6666’s Ranch
According to Fort Worth Report, the massive ranch located in Guthrie, Texas, was originally listed for a whopping $340 million, however the most recent listing from Chas S Middleton showed a price of $192,202,200.
A group led by Yellowstone and 1883 creator, Taylor Sheridan, has been confirmed to have made the purchase.
A while back when talks of the purchase first surfaced, Sheridan, who is a Texas rancher himself, commented on what the legacy of the ranch means to him
“I can’t comment on a pending transaction but I will say this: the legacy of the 6666 Ranch and Miss Marion’s vision for the ranch are vital not only to the ranch itself, but the rich heritage of ranching in Texas.
This legacy is so important to me I chose to highlight it in the upcoming season of ‘Yellowstone’ and will continue to further the legacy and preserve its operations in a manner consistent with that great vision.”
Of course, Taylor began filming down at the 6666’s when Jimmy was sent down there to learn how to be a real cowboy, and it became an integral part of Season 4.
He was mostly absent from Season 5, however, during the Season 5 mid-season finale, we went back down to Texas to see catch up with Jimmy and his new fiancée, Emily.
But back in Montana, the Dutton family needs to find somewhere to take their cattle after a Brucellosis outbreak has compromised the land. John gets on the horn with the 6666’s Ranch, meanwhile Beth starts talking with them about online sales.
And as the mid-season finale wraps up, Rip and some of the Bunkhouse crew are headed south to save the herd.
So all of that to say… it sounds like the perfect transition into a 6666’s spinoff without John Dutton, doesn’t it?
Here’s a few reasons why:
1. Jimmy is already there and Season 4 largely set the table for the 6666’s spinoff.
2. Rip and the crew are already headed down that way, to save the herd. And while they may not be headed to the actual 6666’s Ranch in Texas, the new land is somehow connected.
3. Matthew McConaughey is a native Texas so it makes sense that his character would be a Texan as well.
4. John is set to stay back and continue running the State of Montana so it would be easy to leave him out of the next chapter.
5. Paramount Network announced that the 6666’s spinoff would air on Paramount Network as opposed to the previously announced streaming service Paramount+. If Yellowstone goes away, it would make sense that the new series could slot into that television time.
Only time will tell, but if the plan is to end Yellowstone as we know it and continue the story with a new spinoff series starring a large part of the original cast (and McConaughey), the 6666’s spinoff seems like the most obvious way to do it.
And there are probably many more reasons why it makes sense to continue the story down in Texas including financial reasons (they own the property), filming schedules (usually no harsh winters in Texas), logistics (all of Taylor’s horses, which are used in the show, live down there), and more.
Jefferson White Weighs In
Jefferson White sat down with us on the Whiskey Riff Raff podcast and explained everything he knows about the upcoming spinoff so far.
Here’s what he had to say:
“We filmed those Four Sixes sequences down at the Four Sixes, which is a real life, huge, working cattle ranch… one of the biggest in the country, one of the oldest in the country. After spending four years on the Yellowstone which is a fictional ranch, it was a real eye-opener to go down to the Sixes which is a real life, incredible, sort of goliath, cattle ranch.
As far as the spinoff goes, I don’t think you’ll be surprised that I, Jeff/Jimmy never have any idea what the f*ck is going on, and any time I think I do, Taylor does something better and cooler than I ever could’ve imagined.
All I can say is that I hope… I’m incredibly grateful for the work we’ve gotten to do so far, incredibly proud… all I can say as an actor is job security is very rare and very precious so I wanna play this character as long as they’ll let me.
And we’ll find out together how much longer that is… anytime I think I know what’s best for this character or for this world, Taylor proves me wrong. He knows better than any of us.”
Needless to say, only time will tell, but based on the way we saw Jimmy leave the Yellowstone Ranch at the end of Season 4… it sounds like Jimmy is going to be the star of his own show someday soon.
Stay tuned… with Taylor Sheridan involved, anything is possible.
Listen to the full podcast with Jefferson White, AKA Jimmy Hurdstrom, below:
The podcast is available everywhere. Download the podcast on Apple Podcasts by searching “Whiskey Riff Raff” or click here. We’re also available on Spotify and wherever else you can listen to podcasts.
If you’re looking for the entire Yellowstone soundtrack, complete through every episode of Season 4, then look no further.
Our Yellowstone: The Soundtrack Playlist, featuring every song from every episode, updated in real time, every Sunday night.