Taylor Sheridan’s Two Yellowstone Acting Roles Explained

In addition to creating Yellowstone and its various spinoffs, Taylor Sheridan has played two supporting roles, including an iconic real-life figure.


Yellowstone creator Taylor Sheridan has played two characters in his sprawling Western TV franchise. Over the course of around a decade, Sheridan has evolved from a character actor seen on shows like Son Of Anarchy and director of forgotten horror flick Vile to the most in-demand showrunner on television. He penned the screenplays for acclaimed movies like Hell Or High Water, wrote and directed Wind River before creating Yellowstone, one of the most-watched shows in the U.S.

The modern-day Western struck a chord with viewers, and following the success of prequel miniseries 1883, there are a lot more Yellowstone spinoffs on the horizon. Throughout it all, Sheridan is almost infamous for his intense work ethic; he’s penned every single episode of Yellowstone and its offshoots, in addition to creating or showrunning other series like Mayor Of Kingstown and Tulsa King. Given his workload, it’s understandable that Sheridan doesn’t act much anymore, but thanks to Yellowstone, he’s occasionally able to scratch that itch too.

Taylor Sheridan Plays Travis Wheatley On Yellowstone


Yellowstone’s Travis is a veteran horse trainer and rodeo competitor who is occasionally called down to the ranch by John Dutton (Kevin Costner). Given that he grew up as a cowboy and horse trainer himself, it was only a natural fit that Sheridan would play Travis. That said, the showrunner has claimed he only took the role as he couldn’t find an actor with the necessary skills to pull it off convincingly. After making a handful of appearances during Yellowstone’s first two seasons, Sheridan’s Wheatley had a recurring role on the fourth season.

He’s the one who drove Jimmy (Jefferson White) to the real-life 6666 ranch – which Sheridan now owns – in Yellowstone season 4 after Dutton sent Jimmy down there to become a true cowboy. Wheatley is known for his sarcastic jabs and macho, cocky persona, but he becomes something of a mentor to Jimmy as he adjusts to his new way of life. His extended role during Yellowstone’s fourth season also gave Sheridan an excuse to show off his impressive horse-riding skills. Sheridan’s Wheatley has yet to reappear on Yellowstone season 5, however.

Taylor Sheridan Played Real-Life Cowboy Charlie Goodnight On 1883


Sheridan also made a small guest appearance in 1883, and naturally – given the period – he’s not playing Travis. Instead, he plays Charlie Goodnight, a real-life cowboy and rancher. Goodnight was also a Texas Ranger, and has been dubbed the “Father of the Texas Panhandle.” Sheridan is clearly a fan of Goodnight, and thanks to a big bushy beard he’s hardly recognizable, even to Yellowstone fans. In 1883, the main characters encounter Goodnight as they fight off some cattle rustlers.


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