Over the course of three seasons, things just haven’t gotten easier for the Dutton family on Yellowstone, especially when it comes to the on-again, off-again romance between Rip Wheeler (Cole Hauser) and Beth Dutton (Kelly Reilly). Even when the two momentarily break up, it’s clear there’s still a lot of love between them. Season 4 of the series will only push the couple into new, interesting directions as they try to pick up the pieces after Beth was attacked via mail bomb by an unknown assailant. Rip has always been the enforcer of sorts at the Dutton Ranch, so it’s likely he’ll be out for blood when the show returns later this year.
While we don’t yet know what Beth’s fate is, there’s a pretty good chance she’ll make it out of this ordeal alive, which is great considering that Rip revealed his intentions to marry her before the terrible attack. After three seasons of the two of them going back and forth and Beth learning horrific truths about her past, hopefully things can get on track for the couple every fan just wants to see happy. Those emotions could have been very different if Hauser didn’t make a significant change to his appearance for one key reason.
Cole Hauser naturally has the same hair color as Kelly Reilly, making them look related
Rip Wheeler is basically family to the Duttons at this point. John (Kevin Costner) took him in when he ran away from home at a young age, and he’s been fiercely loyal to both him and Beth over the course of the show’s run. Of course, those behind the scenes wanted to make sure it was clear he wasn’t actually family, as there was a big roadblock to casting the two lovers.
In an interview on The Jenny McCarthy Show, Cole Hauser explains, “When I first got the role, as you know Kelly’s a ginger and I’m ginger as well. So we looked like we were brother and sister! So we kind of had to make sure that wouldn’t be the case.” If you’ve seen Hauser in any of his other projects, most notably as fellow Bostonian Billy McBride in Good Will Hunting, then you know the actor isn’t kidding. His hair is remarkably similar to that of Kelly Reilly’s, so a change had to be made.
Hauser goes on to talk about how show creator Taylor Sheridan approached him about a change-up “[b]ecause I’ve dyed it for other stuff that I’ve done. They liked that look, and it’s kind of a harder look. Your eyes pop a little bit more.” Granted, audiences probably would’ve accepted the relationship as long as it was just explained Rip’s a ranch hand and Beth is actually a Dutton. People are smart, but ultimately, we’re just glad these two amazing actors were cast. They have outstanding chemistry together, as three (soon to be four) seasons have proven time and time again.