‘1883’ Star Eric Nelsen Teases Ennis & Elsa’s Relationship & ‘Unexpected Twists’ Ahead

Eric Nelsen stars in the 'Yellowstone' prequel '1883.' He revealed EXCLUSIVE scoop to HL and teased Ennis and Elsa's romance, a 'roller coaster of emotions,' and scenes that are 'hard to watch.'

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The Yellowstone universe is traveling back to the late 19th century with 1883. The series follows James Dutton’s journey west with his family and fellow comrades, including Ennis, a cowboy who has been hired to accompany James on this trip. Eric Nelsen spoke EXCLUSIVELY with HollywoodLife about what’s ahead and the opportunity to live out his childhood cowboy fantasy.

Eric Nelsen
Eric Nelsen as Ennis. (Paramount+)

“I can definitely say there’s a lot of unexpected twists and turns coming,” Eric revealed. “They were kind of teasing Ennis and Elsa’s relationship. There was even a little clip shown during Yellowstone of behind the scenes of 1883 and it showed us kissing. The audience can kind of piece things together there. There’s definitely some expected relationship going on there. I won’t get into the details of it yet, but I will say there’s a fun triangle about to happen between Elsa, Mr. Dutton, and myself because being the protective father that he is and the intense figure that he is, he doesn’t let me get away with very much. He definitely puts me through the wringer a little bit, so that’ll be fun for the audience to see.”

As we’ve already witnessed, nobody is safe on this journey. This is Taylor Sheridan’s world, and Eric is well aware that you never know what’s around the corner when it comes to a show with Taylor at the helm. “He’s really cutting to the core of what life was like, and you’re going to see that in the upcoming episodes more and more,” Eric said. “A lot of it’s hard to watch, but it gives you a lot of appreciation to live in the period that we live in today, to say the least.”

The actor added, “There’s never a dull moment in the show either. Just when you think something’s going in one direction, it’s probably gonna go another so you can definitely expect a roller coaster of emotions.”

Eric was a “massive fan of Yellowstone” before he was cast in 1883. “It’s so rare I feel like when I get an opportunity at a job where my entire family, which there’s a ton of us, are all fans of the project, “Eric admitted. “From that standpoint alone, it was just so cool because I feel like in 17 years of me in this industry, there hasn’t been a single project that everybody I know, family-wise, has been behind completely. This is definitely that project. The support has just been through the roof.”

Isabel May
Isabel May as Elsa Dutton. (Paramount+)

Eric also noted that the transformation process has been “fully immersive” for him. “Our costume designer Janie Bryant just knocked it out of the park and the props guys found everything authentically from the time period. All of those elements just help bring that to life so much more for us actors. I really think, aside from the actors, everything else you see on camera just brought it to life in a way that was just incredible. Doing a period piece, in general, has its challenges because it’s not like I can just go interview people from that time period. We’re basing it off of books and movies and history. So it’s kind of fun and allows us the liberty to explore and put it out there how we see it, which is always exciting. It’s not every day you get to get to be a cowboy, so I feel like the little boy in me every single day I’m at work is just like screaming through the roof. As a kid, I wanted to grow up to be a cowboy, and actually getting to be one is just living out my fantasy.” New episodes of 1883 debut Sundays on Paramount+.