‘1923’: Meet the Cast & Characters of the ‘Yellowstone’ Prequel (PHOTOS)

Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren (left), Aminah Nieves (top right), and James Badge Dale (bottom right) in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for 1923.]

The Dutton family tree expands with every Yellowstone iteration, and the generations go further back yet again in 1923. Having premiered Sunday, December 18 on Paramount+, Helen Mirren and Harrison Ford star as the Dutton family leaders in this rendition of the Taylor Sheridan-created TV family, marking Ford’s first-ever series regular role.

The 1923 characters follow the familiar structure viewers have come to know from this franchise. There’s the Dutton family with their various spouses and children, plus workers on the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch who are as good as blood relatives.

Then there are the capitalistic nemeses who are chomping at the bit to get Dutton’s land. There are those who dare tread on Dutton land for their own purposes, but unlike one particular villain, they’re not trying to make a massive fortune. In this Great Depression era, they’re just trying to survive without limits.

And then there’s the Indigenous people’s narrative of the story, which will be represented by a Residential Boarding School in 1923, the histories of which are a chilling, grim, and brutal part of American history.

Get to know the characters of 1923 in the gallery, below, including where they fall on Kevin Costner‘s Yellowstone family tree.

1923, Sundays, Paramount+

Harrison Ford in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Harrison Ford as Jacob Dutton

Husband to Cara, Jacob became the patriarch of the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch after his brother, ranch founder James Dutton (Tim McGraw’s character in 1883), died. Jacob and James had one other sibling, Claire Dutton, who died in 1883 (played by Dawn Olivieri, who is now in Yellowstone Season 5 in a new role).

This makes Jacob the great-granduncle of Costner’s John Dutton III. Jacob and Cara have no biological children.

Helen Mirren in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Helen Mirren as Cara Dutton

The Dutton family matriarch and wife to Jacob, Cara runs the Dutton home with Emma Dutton (Marley Shelton) as the cowboys tend to the land and livestock.

She’s the great-grandaunt of Costner’s character by marriage. After John Dutton, Sr. (James Badge Dale) and Spencer Dutton’s (Brandon Sklenar) parents, James and Margaret Dutton (Faith Hill), died, Jacob and Cara took them in as their own.

James Badge Dale in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

James Badge Dale as John Dutton, Sr.

John is the oldest nephew and right-hand man of Jacob and Cara and son of James and Margaret. He and older sister Elsa Dutton (Isabel May) were seen as children in 1883, and Spencer was seen as a child in the Yellowstone Season 4 flashback episode that introduced McGraw and Hill’s characters (taking place after the events of 1883, the episode showed McGraw’s James’ death).

John is married to Emma and father to Jack (Darren Mann) at the beginning of the series. He was presumed to be the father of John Dutton II, who would one day father Costner’s character, making him John III’s grandfather. But John’s death in Episode 3 means that his son, Jack, or his brother, Spencer, could be John II’s father.

Marley Shelton in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Marley Shelton as Emma Dutton

Emma is the dutiful wife of John Dutton, Sr. and mother to Jack. She helps Cara keep the ranch and home running while the cowboys tend to the animals and vast Dutton land.

Brandon Sklenar in '1923'
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Brandon Sklenar as Spencer Dutton

John Sr.’s younger brother, Spencer is far from Montana in 1923 working as a hunter for hire in Africa. He was a soldier in the First World War and carries those life-changing terrors with him. He meets fiancée Alexandra (Julia Schlaepfer) in Africa and falls in love quickly.

Spencer was initially believed to be the granduncle of John III, but the death of his brother changed what we thought we know about the Dutton family tree. Now, it’s possible that Spencer could be John II’s father and John III’s grandfather.

Brandon Sklenar and Julia Schlaepfer in '1923'
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Julia Schlaepfer as Alexandra

Alexandra/Alex met Spencer by chance at a hotel in Africa. She was engaged to someone she didn’t love, and the instant connection between her and Spencer was enough for her to leave her life behind and whisk off on an adventure with him. They’re now engaged and will soon head to Montana.

Alex could possibly be the mother of John II and grandmother of John III.

Darren Mann in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Darren Mann as Jack Dutton

John and Emma’s son and grandnephew to Jacob and Cara, he is a dedicated rancher who is deeply loyal to his family. Jack is engaged to Elizabeth Strafford (Michelle Randolph) in the beginning of 1923.

Jack could also be the father of John II, but that’s still left to be revealed. If Spencer is the patriarch of John III’s lineage (and it seems most likely that he is), Jack and Elizabeth would be cousins to Spencer’s children.

Michelle Randolph in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Michelle Randolph as Elizabeth Strafford

Elizabeth is a feisty and capable young woman set to marry into the Dutton family when she exchanges vows with fiancé Jack. Both of them were injured in the gun fight that took the life of Jack’s father.

Brian Geraghty in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Brian Geraghty as Zane Davis

Zane is a fiercely loyal ranch foreman. Think of him as 1923‘s Rip Wheeler. Not related by blood, but still family.

Aminah Nieves in '1923'
James Minchin III/Paramount+

Aminah Nieves as Teonna Rainwater

Teonna is a young Indigenous woman at the School for American Indians in Montana, a government residential boarding school.

Jennifer Ehle in '1923'
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Jennifer Ehle as Sister Mary O'Connor

Sister Mary O’Connor is an Irish nun that teaches at the school and has a fraught dynamic with Teonna.

Jerome Flynn in '1923'
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Jerome Flynn as Banner Creighton

Banner is a Scottish shepherd leading the town’s group of sheep herders, who use the same grazing fields as the Duttons and will fiercely fight for their right to do so.

Harrison Ford and Robert Patrick in '1923'
Emerson Miller/Paramount+

Robert Patrick as Sheriff William McDowell

Pictured above to the right of Ford, McDowell is the new sheriff in town. He has a good relationship with Jacob.

Priests and nuns in '1923'

Sebatian Roché as Father Renaud

Father Renaud is the head of the School for American Indians in Montana.

Timothy Dalton in '1923'

Timothy Dalton as Donald Whitfield

Donald is a powerful, self-confident man who reeks of wealth and the lack of empathy it requires to attain it. Sounds like a classic Dutton nemesis if you ask us.