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Yellowstone's Kelly Reilly Finds Fulfillment Thanks To Beth's Non-Existent Filter

While there are plenty of ways to describe the personality of Kelly Reilly's Beth Dutton on "Yellowstone," one word that likely springs to mind is: complicated. There are other words, too, like fiery, unfiltered, and vengeful — actually, make that ruthlessly vengeful. All of which contribute to the character's complex nature. And as a result, Bethany has become one of the more talked-about, polarizing characters on Paramount's hit neo-Western primetime soap.

The convoluted truth is Beth has a history of drama and trauma lurking in her backstory that provides sound psychological underpinnings for her being the way she is. For instance, there's that time as a panicked, pregnant teen when she turned to her brother Jamie (Wes Bentley) for help getting an abortion but ended up being tricked into having a hysterectomy. So, from Beth's childhood on, yeah, it's complicated. This said, it's perhaps no surprise that the actress who lives Beth's full-tilt reality week after week on "Yellowstone" is first to applaud her character's don't-care, damn-the-slings-and-arrows spirit on the show.

Kelly Reilly says playing Beth's wildness is a sort of fantasy fulfillment

Interviewed by The Hollywood Reporter about her portrayal of Beth Dutton, Kelly Reilly explains that her approach takes into account Beth's history as a victim as well as her present-day nature as anything but. In this respect, the actress says she was "Energized by [Beth's] irreverence and her danger and recklessness, but also her pain." Saying she'd never encountered a character like Beth before, Reilly described how it was essential to balance the tempest of conflicting emotions at war within her. "I knew that to inhabit all of that, for her to resonate or command any sort of emotional response, those notes had to all be equal in her."

"I think she's a storm. She's weather," Reilly said of Beth's pent-up anger and willingness to do whatever is required to achieve her ends. She then alluded to the freedom inherent in being like Beth, in acting almost without fear of consequence. "You and I wouldn't get away with speaking the way she speaks or doing some of the things she does. So it's a heightened reality of, wouldn't that be wonderful if sometimes I could just say what I think?"

In a similar vein, interviewed on Entertainment Tonight Online, the actress recalled discussing the character's headstrong ferocity with "Yellowstone" writer-creator Sheridan Taylor. "I'm going off a cliff with [Beth] anyway," she told him, prompting Sheridan to respond: "You bet. And I'm going to push you off that cliff."