Is ‘1883’ Season 2 Happening? Isabel May Seems to Think So

ARTICLE HIGHLIGHTS

  • Yellowstone prequel 1883 stars Isabel May and tells the story of John Dutton’s ancestors.
  • Paramount recently announed that Yellowstone season 5 is happening.
  • While nothing official has been announced about season 2 of 1883, May hinted that she knows Taylor Sheridan’s plan past season 1.
1883 season 2 hinted at by Isabel May pictured in a halter dress attends the after party for the world premiere at SW Steakhouse at Wynn Las Vegas on December 11, 2021
Isabel May | Ethan Miller/Getty Images

1883 is past the halfway point of season 1, and some fans are already wondering about a possible season 2. At the recent TCA Winter Press Tour, Paramount+ didn’t announce a renewal for the Yellowstone prequel. But according to star Isabel May (Elsa Dutton), she knows the overall plan. And it looks like season 2 is absolutely happening.

‘1883’ tells the story of John Dutton’s ancestors

Thanks to the success of Yellowstone, creator Taylor Sheridan expanded his universe at the end of 2021 with the prequel 1883. Set in the late 19th century, the series tells the story of John Dutton’s (Kevin Costner) ancestors — his great, great grandparents James and Margaret Dutton (Tim McGraw and Faith Hill).

Along with their teenage daughter Elsa and five-year-old son John (Audie Rick), James and Margaret head west on the Oregon Trail. They eventually settle in Montana on the land that becomes John’s beloved Yellowstone Ranch.

Paramount+ has not confirmed a season 2

While Yellowstone airs on the Paramount Network and just ended season 4, 1883 is one of the stars of streamer Paramount+.  Which after the premiere revealed that 1883 broke their record for “most-watched original series premiere ever.”

To kick off the series, they gave the prequel’s first episode a special airing on Paramount. And that move resulted in a huge audience. Still, there’s been no confirmation of a season 2.

“The results of 1883’s debut are truly phenomenal,” Tanya Giles, chief programming officer of ViacomCBS Streaming, told Deadline. “The Day 1 streaming numbers coupled with the results of the linear sampling effort (which amassed 4.9 million total viewers), and social response from our audience show the tremendous promise for this series.”

‘1883’ star Isabel May believes season 2 is happening

1883 star Isabel May is a 21-year-old actor who plays the teenage daughter of McGraw and Hill’s James and Margaret Dutton. As the series’ narrator, Elsa is a main part of the story. And she joked that she knows “everything” about the bigger picture of 1883.

When recently asked by The Hollywood Reporter if she knew “beyond season 1,” May said that she knew “a little beyond the first season.” As for how much she knew about Sheridan’s “overall plan,” she said:

“I’ve been let in. I haven’t poked and prodded, personally, because I’ve never been one to do that. But he’s always been very forthright with me, and it’s probably because I don’t poke and prod.”

Isabel May was the only person who auditioned for Elsa Dutton

May also revealed that it was actually a failed audition for one of Sheridan’s other series — Mayor of Kingstown — that led her to the role of Elsa. She says she was “terribly wrong” for the part in the Jeremy Renner-led drama. But, Sheridan knew right away May was perfect for 1883.

“I don’t know what happened or what it was about myself or our interaction that sparked something in him, but Elsa came to life after our meeting,” May recalled.

“He called two weeks later and said, ‘You’re Elsa Dutton. I want you to be Elsa Dutton. Please be Elsa Dutton.’ And I said, ‘Well, of course, I’ll be Elsa Dutton because you’re Taylor Sheridan and it’s my dream to work with you.’”

‘1883’ creator Taylor Sheridan saw season 1 when he met Isabel May

From Sheridan’s perspective, he told Wide Open Country that Paramount+ loved his pilot script for 1883. They gave him about seven months to cast the series, hire the crew, write the scripts, and shoot the episodes. But none of that could happen if he didn’t find his Elsa Dutton first.

“When I met Isabel, the whole story, all 10 episodes, went right through my head,” Sheridan revealed. “I called Paramount and said, ‘I’m going to sit down and start writing…but I need to hire the lead, the female lead, who’s a complete unknown, right now, before I start writing. Because it won’t work if we don’t get her.’”

New episodes of 1883 arrive Sundays on Paramount+.

RELATED: ‘1883’: When Eric Nelsen Confronted Taylor Sheridan and Asked Him Why — He Simply Answered ‘It Has to Happen This Way’