In June 2022, a handful of actors behind the Dutton family sat down for a joint interview with the Yellowstone YouTube channel to discuss a range of topics. When it came time for Cole Hauser to discuss the role of Rip Wheeler, he revealed how his upbringing influenced his portrayal. As he recalls, when he was a child, his mother bought a 150-acre ranch where he had to look after a pony named Cinnamon. He would ride him around all day, and he was so well trained that if his mother called Hauser for dinner, he knew he would have to take him back inside. Hauser notes that he lived this rural lifestyle for years.
Cole Hauser didn’t realize it at the time, but all his experience with horses prepared him to play rough-and-tumble farm hand Rip Wheeler in Yellowstone. Although his role in the program could have been much different. As he said on the Bingeworthy Podcast, “I think the original idea was maybe to play one of Kevin’s sons.” However, as he read through the script, the Rip Wheeler character kept catching his attention and prompting him to change course to change. “There’s something really loyal and beautiful about him. He’s a throwback character that I don’t think we’ve seen in a very long time,” adds Hauser.
Over the years, Cole Hauser has made it clear that he was made for the role of Rip Wheeler. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that he continues to play a prominent role on Yellowstone in the future.