“Yellowstone” Star Cole Hauser Thought Fans Would Hate His “Bad Boy” Character Rip Wheeler

Yellowstone / Facebook

Cole Hauser Was Surprised Yellowstone Fans Liked Rip Wheeler

Yellowstone star Cole Hauser never anticipated that his character, Rip Wheeler, would be loved by viewers. In fact, he expected the opposite.

During a recent interview with PEOPLE, Hauser shared how he initially thought fans would react to Rip. Since Rip has a hot temper and tends to gravitate toward violence, Hauser thought he’d “be so hated” by Yellowstone fans.


Cole Hauser, who plays Rip Wheeler, thought "Yellowstone" fans would hate the character
Yellowstone / Facebook

However, much to Hauser’s shock, fans loved Rip from the start of the series. The positive response also surprised show creator and writer Taylor Sheridan.

Putting it simply, Hauser said, “[It] surprised the s— out of Taylor Sheridan and I, at first.”

Hauser said he seriously questioned fans, especially women, who told him they loved Rip:

At first, to see women coming up and saying, ‘Oh my God, I love your character.’ I was thinking, ‘What’s wrong with you?‘”

But as Yellowstone continued, Hauser understood the fans’ point of view. He realized something about “bad boy” characters like Rip draws people in. “…I see the bad boy kind of thing that they love,” he said.

Cole Shares What He Believes Is The “Scariest” Part About Rip

Though Hauser still admits that Rip can be a terrifying character. He shared what he believes is the “scariest” part about him, saying:

[Rip is] like normal people. And I think that’s what’s the scariest part [about him] … he is just that kind of animal.”

On the other hand, Hauser knows that Rip has a softer side which endears him to fans.

What makes [Rip] special is that he has an unbelievable heart too,” the actor said. “I mean, his loyalty is to not only the Dutton family, but to Beth and his kindness, other than wanting to kill people [at] times, is just, to me, it’s the best of both worlds to be able to play.”

Cole Hauser and Kelly Reilly as Beth Dutton in "Yellowstone"
Yellowstone / Facebook

Hauser added, “You look for colors in characters, and Taylor [Sheridan], in the last five seasons, has given Rip those wonderful colors.”

Hauser is preparing to play Rip again as production starts soon on the long-delayed second half of Yellowstone‘s fifth and final season. Stay tuned to see what will become of Rip Wheeler in the last episodes of the series.

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