Lawmen: Bass Reeves — release date, trailer, cast, plot and everything we know about the Yellowstone spinoff series

David Oyelewo in Lawmen: Bass Reeves
David Oyelewo in Lawmen: Bass Reeves (Image credit: Courtesy of Paramount Plus)

The Yellowstone universe, led by creator Taylor Sheridan, is ever expanding with Lawmen: Bass Reeves set to be another new entry. This Paramount Plus original series stars David Oyelowo as the historic 19th-century lawman.

Bass Reeves is going to take place during the same time period as the previous hit Yellowstone prequel 1883. It's just another entry in the Sheridan-verse, alongside 1923, Tulsa King, Special Ops: Lioness, Land Man and 6666 are also on the horizon.

While it was originally developed as a standalone series, Variety now reports that Lawmen: Bass Reeves is expected to be an anthology series that focuses on different famous lawmen throughout history.

But Bass Reeves is the first subject of the series, so here's everything we know about the new western limited series.

Lawmen: Bass Reeves release date

Lawmen: Bass Reeves premieres Sunday, November 5, on all Paramount Plus platforms globally.

Lawmen: Bass Reeves cast

The Lawmen: Bass Reeves cast is being headline by a few big names, including David Oyelowo and Dennis Quaid.

Oyelowo is going to play Reeves himself. His list of credits include roles in movies like Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Red Tails, Lincoln, Lee Daniels’ The Butler, A Most Violent Year, A United Kingdom, Queen of Katwe and most notably Selma as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On TV, he has appeared in Star Wars: Rebels, The Girl Before and was nominated for an Emmy for his work in the TV movie Nightingale.

Quaid, meanwhile, will play Sherrill Lynn, a Deputy US Marshall. Quaid is a longtime Hollywood star best known for roles in The Parent Trap, The Right Stuff, The Rookie, Any Given Sunday and, more recently, Strange World and American Underdog.

Other notable members of the cast include Forrest Goodluck (The Revenant) as Billy Crow, a young Cherokee man with an affinity for dime store books and gaudy style; Lauren Banks (City on a Hill) as Jennie, Bass Reeves' strong and fiercely loyal wife; Barry Pepper (Saving Private Ryan, True Grit) as Esau Pierce, the leader of the 1st Cherokee Mounted Rifles and a battle tested warrior; Demi Singleton (King Richard) as Sally, Bass and Jennie's precocious daughter; and Donald Sutherland (The Hunger Games) as Judge Isaac Parker, an imposing and commanding judge in the Fort Smith Courthouse with a complicated legacy.

Other recurring cast members include Joaquina Kalukango, Lonnie Chavis, Grantham Coleman, Tosin Morohunfola, Dale Dickey, Rob Morgan, Ryan O’Nan, Margot Bingham Mo Brings Plenty, Justin Hurtt-Dunkley and Bill Dawes.

Shea Whigham (Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One) and Garrett Hedlund (Tulsa King) are set to be guest stars.

Take a look at some of the cast with these photos:

Who is Bass Reeves?

So just who is Bass Reeves?

Bass Reeves is a real-life lawman from the Wild West and one of the first Black deputy US Marshals, given the position in 1875. It is recorded that Reeves killed 14 outlaws and apprehended more than 3,000 throughout his career as he worked a region of 75,000 square miles of Indian Territory (modern-day Kansas and Oklahoma). He is considered one of the greatest frontier lawmen in history and is believed to have been an inspiration for the character of the Lone Ranger. 

Lawmen: Bass Reeves plot

Here is the official synopsis for the series from Paramount Plus:

"Lawmen: Bass Reeves will bring the legendary lawman and outlaws of the Wild West to life. Reeves (Oyelowo), known as the greatest frontier hero in American history, worked in the post-Reconstruction era as a federal peace officer in the Indian Territory, capturing over 3,000 of the most dangerous criminals without ever being wounded. Lawmen: Bass Reeves is an anthology series with future iterations that will follow other iconic lawmen and outlaws who have impacted history."

Lawmen: Bass Reeves trailer

The first trailer for Lawmen: Bass Reeves is now available, watch it directly below:

You can also watch a previously released first look teaser right here:

Here is the first teaser trailer for Lawmen: Bass Reeves:

Who is directing Lawmen: Bass Reeves?

Taylor Sheridan is serving as an executive producer on 1883: The Bass Reeves Story, as is Oyelowo and his wife Jessica, but the Yellowstone creator has also been set as the director for the first two episodes of the series. Deadline reported the news.

As for who is going to be directing the remaining four episodes of the limited series, that is still unknown, but Oyelowo told Deadline during an event for the launch of Paramount Plus in the UK that he hopes to fill the remaining episodes with a diverse lineup of directors.

"We have to populate the show with a bunch of Black people to make sure that going forward the next Taylors are Black and brown and that there’s a bunch of them, so that it doesn’t become a scarcity of the top-flight Black directors."

Michael Balderston

Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Peaky Blinders, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Saturday Night Live, Only Murders in the Building and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.