Helen Mirren and Harrison Ford introduce us to ‘1923’s Cara and Jacob Dutton

Hold onto your cowboy hats and pearls because we’re taking a ride back to 1923. Taylor Sheridan’s growing Yellowstone universe is expanding again with the December debut of the next prequel in the Dutton legacy. 

Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren will breathe life into Jacob and Cara Dalton when the series premieres next month, and fans got their first look at the characters today. In perhaps the most fitting images to come from the Yellowstone realm to date, Cara and Jacob have left us awe-struck. Jaws dropped with the beauty of the pictures and the emotional heartstrings they were already pulling at. 

We see a couple who look very in love at the same time that they’re shouldering the weight of the world. The name of the game has never changed for the Dutton family: they try to keep their families together despite a changing and sometimes angry world. 1923 will set up another heart-wrenching yet powerful story of family, love, and the fight for survival. 

The synopsis for Paramount’s 1923 reads as follows: 

1923 focuses on the Dutton family’s next two generations as they struggle to survive historic drought, lawlessness and prohibition, and an epidemic of cattle theft; all battled beneath the cloud of Montana’s great depression, which preceded the nation by almost a decade.”

Ford and Mirren will lead an all-star cast through lawlessness and turmoil while trying to remain esteemed and influential, showing a unified front against whatever dares stand in their path. 

Speaking to Vanity Fair, both Ford and Mirren have a lot to say about their characters and the storyline they’ll be telling. 

“He’s the silverback. He’s responsible for that branch of the family. These are two people with a very strong bond to each other who are facing really complicated circumstances.”

Mirren says their driving force is power and the bond they’ve built together over time. 

“You need someone who is capable of making decisions, and hopefully making the right decisions, but at least making a decision and going with it—in other words, a leader. That’s what has propelled them into this position of running the ranch, running the family, being the linchpin around whom, at this moment in time, the family revolves.”

The Dutton family of the 1920s will follow the same rule book as the Duttons of today: its life or death, no matter what the cost. Read also: to survive, others won’t. Ford says it’s complicated. 

“The Duttons live by a code of behavior that they set for themselves, and it requires complicated moral and ethical judgment. It’s not just the physical life that’s hard. The challenges that they face from modernity, the challenges to their way of life, to their freedom, and the opportunities that they’ve enjoyed, is a big part of the story. The upcoming Depression and all of the pressures, economic and social, are leading up to this very volatile time in American history.”

1923 is undoubtedly a lesson in American history, and we’ll be on the road to learning a lot. The series kicks off on Paramount Plus on Dec. 18, just in time for a holiday watch party.