TV western hit ‘Yellowstone’ will end airing after this season

The current season of “Yellowstone,” the western starring Kevin Costner that has become one of television’s most popular shows, will be its last, Paramount announced Friday.

The series, which airs on the Paramount Network, will be followed by a new “Yellowstone” sequel – created, like the original, by Taylor Sheridan – which will debut in December, Paramount said. The sequel will air on Paramount Network, a cable channel, and later on the Paramount+ streaming platform.

“‘Yellowstone’ was the cornerstone on which we launched an entire universe of global hits,” Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios, which produces “Yellowstone” with 101 Studios, said in a statement. . which announced that its final episodes would air starting in November.

“Yellowstone,” which chronicles the saga of the Duttons, a wealthy and rowdy Montana ranching family led by patriarch John Dutton (Costner), is one of the biggest shows on TV. Its Season 4 finale was the most-watched prime-time scripted TV broadcast of 2022, Variety reported, with more than 13 million viewers on the night of its premiere. And the Season 5 premiere last November drew a total of more than 17 million viewers, according to Paramount.

The announcement of “Yellowstone’s” ending came amid rumors in the press of tensions between Costner and the show’s creative team, and reports that he will not be returning to the show after this season.

“Yellowstone” has sometimes been called television’s “red state hit”, a label that some critics have called too simplistic. (Sheridan told The New York Times in 2019 that “people who call it a red state show probably never watched it.”) But he drew attention for telling stories from a part of America that is underrepresented in Hollywood programming.

Paramount released data earlier in its run suggesting it was most popular in the southern and central parts of the country. But its demographic reach is broader, a dynamic Friday ad hinted at when it mentioned the show’s “passionate audience from the center of the country to each of the coasts.”

Before becoming one of television’s most prolific creators, Sheridan was best known as a screenwriter – his screenplay for the Western feature “Hell or High Water” was nominated for an Academy Award in 2017. His other series, broadcast on Paramount+, include “Yellowstone” prequels “1883” (starring real-life couple Tim McGraw and Faith Hill) and “1923” (Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren) as well as crime dramas “Tulsa King” (Sylvester Stallone) and “Mayor of Kingstown” (Jeremy Renner).

McCarthy said in the statement that he was confident the as-yet-untitled sequel would be “another big hit.”

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