Julia Schlaepfer as Alexandra and Brandon Sklenar as Spencer Dutton of the Paramount+ series 1923.
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

There’s Another Yellowstone Prequel In The Works That Takes Place After 1923

And fans really, really want Spencer and Alex to be the main story.

by Kaitlin Kimont
Originally Published: 

Yellowstone introduced us to the Dutton family when it premiered in 2018. Then there was 1883, the first prequel series that detailed the Duttons’ arduous and dangerous journey on the Oregon Trail before ultimately settling in Montana. We’re still reeling from the first season of 1923, the next chapter of the Dutton family saga set during prohibition and the Great Depression, and there’s already another Yellowstone prequel series in the works. Taylor Sheridan’s next project is titled 1944 and here’s everything we know so far.

1944 will be the “sequel” to another Yellowstone prequel, 1923.

1944 has been described as the “sequel” to 1923, which stars Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren. In February, the Ravalli Republic was first to report the news that Paramount Network and 101 Studios is developing a new series titled, 1944.

Network executives announced the news at a thank-you event for the local community in Hamilton, Montana, a town near where Yellowstone has filmed. “Of course, we’ve got 1923, we’ve got the sequel, we’re not letting the cat out of the bag, it’s going to be called 1944,” Tom Prince, executive vice president of production at 101 Studios, said at the event. “My guess is that it’ll be shooting largely in the Bitterroot Valley because it has to take place at what is Chief Joseph Ranch.”

Yellowstone fans will recognize Chief Joseph Ranch as the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch. It’s an actual working ranch located in Darby, Montana.

Network executives said the new Yellowstone prequel 1944 “has to take place at what is Chief Joseph Ranch.”Paramount

What will 1944 be about?

Beyond the title, Paramount has not released any details about the new prequel. Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Showtime & MTV Entertainment Studios, did say audiences can expect a “thrilling” show. “[1944] will take audiences on a thrilling, new and unexpected journey with the complex and compelling storytelling that has become a hallmark of the franchise and has helped turn it into a worldwide cultural phenomenon — thanks to the creative mastermind of Taylor Sheridan,” McCarthy told Variety in November.

Because both storylines for 1883 and 1923 are based on their respective time eras, it’s probably safe to assume 1944 will take place in the 40s. With that in mind, the series could follow the Dutton family as it grapples with World War II. It could also possibly look at the presidential election of 1944, which Franklin D. Roosevelt won a year before his death.

With any number of historical events as a backdrop, it seems likely that 1944 would continue to follow the next Dutton generation, their ever-lasting battle to hold onto the family’s Yellowstone ranch, and general life in the American West in the 40s.

Who could be in 1944?

Again, very few details about 1944, including its cast, have been announced. But that doesn’t mean fans haven’t started to speculate or share their theories and suggestions. With confirmation that Matthew McConaughey’s unnamed Yellowstone spin-off is actually happening, one theory bubbling up is that the How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days actor could portray Spencer Dutton in 1944.

Others, however, hope that 1923’s original Spencer (Brandon Sklenar) and his wife Alexandra (Julia Schlaepfer) will be the main couple of the series.

“Please let Spencer and Alex be an important part of 1944!!!!” one fan commented.

“I would like to see Spencer and Alexandra part of 1944, just aged a bit it would only be 21 years later. It is a beautiful love story,” another said.

Brandon Sklenar as Spencer Dutton and Julia Schlaepfer as Alexandra in the first season of 1923. Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Whoever Sheridan ends up choosing to be the focus of 1944, let’s just hope it brings us closer to finding out who John Dutton III’s grandfather is.

When will 1944 premiere?

While the Hollywood writers’ strike has ended, the SAG-AFTRA labor unions, representing actors, are still on strike. Filming not begun yet, so it will likely be a while until we’re able to stream 1944. All we know for certain that 1944 is in the works.

In addition to 1944, Sheridan surely has his hands full. The second half of Yellowstone Season 5 is set to air in November 2024 and another spin-off has been greenlit: a “contemporary” new series titled 2024, according to Variety. “We can’t wait to bring 1944 and 2024 to audiences everywhere,” David Glasser, CEO of 101 Studios, said in a statement.

There’s really no shortage of Dutton drama in the hopper.

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