Taylor Sheridan’s Journey: From Actor to Accomplished TV Producer through Writing, Overcoming Setbacks, and Embracing Success

Hollywood’s fastest-growing hitmaker was also named TV Producer of the Year by THR. He now breaks his silence on the final episode of “Yellowstone,” Kevin Costner’s departure, and more.

The Yellowstone showrunner, who went from an insignificant actor to Hollywood’s most prolific writer in a decade, is notorious for his bluntness and has frequently been at the center of a flood of dramatic stories.

Kevin Costner, the star of his main show, is leaving amid anonymous newspaper criticism. Sheridan took over two other projects, Special Ops: Lioness – a spy thriller, and Tulsa King — the Sylvester Stallone drama.

Disappointments and Successes

The pilot for the Mayor of Kingstown, which he wrote for the first time in 2011, got him meetings at every major network and every agency. He received numerous offers to purchase it.

Sheridan declined. He says the studios wanted to recruit a room of professional writers to make TV the traditional way. Sheridan was certain he could write the show.

Even after his first writing triumph, Sheridan was reluctant to allow others to adapt his work and was willing to walk away. Sheridan considers himself stubborn and inventive.

Sheridan’s “modern American frontier” trilogy — Sicario (2015), Hell or High Water (2016), and Wind River (2017) — made him famous.

Yellowstone, another script, was previously a film. HBO developed “The Godfather in Montana” after Sheridan proposed it. Michael Lombardo, the then-programming president, supported Sheridan, but his team didn’t.

HBO passed on the hit show after a number of complaints. That should have ended the Duttons.

HBO normally keeps the rights to the scripts it cultivates and rejects, partly to avoid what happened next: their time and money invested into a project becoming a huge success for a rival.

Sheridan marketed Yellowstone around town after HBO failed. He claims everyone declined. When Paramount finally agreed to produce, Sheridan warned executives they would lose all creative control and incur significant production costs.

Yellowstone premiered on Paramount Network in 2018. Ratings soared.

Writing and Show Cost

Sheridan frequently works in a one-room “cabinet” that he constructed in Wyoming. He believes he was always a fast writer, but after establishing his script-generating isolation bunker, he could compose episodes of hit TV shows quickly.

Sheridan was writing, producing, and directing by early 2021. Paramount called Sheridan in April, changing everything.

The studio’s parent firm made a mistake by selling Yellowstone’s streaming rights to Peacock. Sheridan’s 1883 pilot script impressed executives and they may stream a Yellowstone prequel series.

This article appeared in NewsHouse and has been published here with permission.

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Written by Western Reader

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