Showrunner Explains Separation of 'Lawmen: Bass Reeves' from 'Yellowstone' Spinoff

The show "Lawmen: Bass Reeves" starts on Sunday, November 5th on Paramount+.

Lawmen: Bass Reeves

The Lawmen: Bass Reeves series will start on Paramount+ on Sunday, November 5th. Initially, it was thought to be a part of the Yellowstone TV show, especially the prequel called 1883. However, now it's become its own separate project. The reason for this change is because the creators wanted to tell a story about Bass Reeves that takes place before the events of 1883.

Chad Feehan, the person behind the series, explained in an interview with TVLine that connecting Lawmen: Bass Reeves to 1883 was an idea they considered at first. But as they delved deeper into Bass Reeves' story, they realized it should stand on its own, separate from Taylor Sheridan's Yellowstone and its prequel series that follow the Dutton family.

"But for me, once I learned some of the things I didn't know about Bass' life and decided where we wanted to start the story and where we wanted to end the story, it preceded 1883," he explained. He went on to add that the eight-episode series will take place from roughly 1862 to 1877 — ending six years before 1883, the year the Dutton story begins.

What's the story of Lawmen: Bass Reeves?

Lawmen: Bass Reeves tells "the untold story of the most legendary lawman in the Old West and follows the journey of Reeves (Oyelowo) and his rise from enslavement to law enforcement as the first Black U.S. Marshal west of the Mississippi. Despite arresting over 3,000 outlaws during the course of his career, the weight of the badge was heavy, and he wrestled with its moral and spiritual cost to his beloved family. Lawmen: Bass Reeves is an all-new, standalone anthology series and future iterations will follow other iconic lawmen and outlaws who have impacted history."

"Bass Reeves was an extraordinary man who lived an extraordinary life at an extraordinary time in American history. He was enslaved, he went on to fight in the Civil War, he escaped enslavement during that time, lived with Native Americans for a number of years where he learned a bunch of skills that became applicable when he went on to be a deputy marshal, and had a career that spanned nearly 40 years in law enforcement." Oyelowo told Entertainment Weekly previously.

"My goal, my hope, my ambition for this has always been to have an opportunity to contextualize the contribution of Black People to this country in a way that colors outside of the lines of what we have normally seen," he said.

Who is in the Cast of Lawmen: Bass Reeves?

The show features Oyelowo, who is also one of the executive producers, along with a talented cast including Lauren E. Banks, Demi Singleton, Forrest Goodluck, Barry Pepper, Donald Sutherland, Dennis Quaid, Shea Whigham, and Garrett Hedlund in guest roles. Additionally, Joaquina Kalukango, Lonnie Chavis, Grantham Coleman, Tosin Morohunfola, Dale Dickey, Rob Morgan, Ryan O'Nan, Margot Bingham, Mo Brings Plenty, Justin Hurtt-Dunkley, and Bill Dawes appear in recurring roles.

Lawmen: Bass Reeves will premiere with two episodes on Paramount+ on November 5th.

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