Before and After ‘Yellowstone’: A Side-by-Side Look at Kelly Reilly’s Transformation
Kelly Reilly has developed quite a fan base during her years starring as Beth Dutton on Yellowstone. Many fans didn’t even realize she was British because she does such a convincing job playing a Montana native on the show. She’s currently back for Yellowstone season 5, and fans are anxious to see what’s in store for this popular character. But long before the English actress appeared on the Paramount Network, she was getting her start in England in various plays, TV shows, and films that would eventually take her overseas to build a name for herself in Hollywood. Today, she has an eclectic resume that ranges from Shakespeare to Oscar-nominated dramas and French comedies. Reilly really can do a little bit of everything.
Growing up as the daughter of a police officer and a hospital receptionist, Reilly didn’t necessarily jump right into “the biz” when she decided to become an actress. Just like Beth Dutton would do, she paved her own path and made it happen for herself. In honor of one of our favorite leading ladies of television, let’s take a trip down memory lane to see Kelly Reilly throughout her career from the very beginning to today on Yellowstone.
1996 – Poldark
When Kelly Reilly decided she wanted to be on television, she took some serious initiative that probably was a pleasant surprise to the producers of ITV’s TV show, Prime Suspect. She wrote them a letter asking for work and 6 months later, auditioned and appeared on Prime Suspect 4: Inner Circle as Polly Henry. The following year she appeared in an episode of Bramwell followed by the TV film Poldark, where she played the role of Clowance Poldark.
2001 – Rising star
So, this throwback photo isn’t from a notable moment in Reilly’s career, it’s just a screening of the Sean Penn film I Am Sam. But let’s all take a moment to enjoy a young Kelly Reilly! Presumably, sometime around when this was taken, Reilly landed the role of Young Amy in the Helen Mirren film Last Order.
2003- Theater career
Early in her career, it wasn’t necessarily the onscreen roles that showed the world that Kelly Reilly was a powerhouse…it was her stage career. Her performance in After Miss Julie made her a star on the London Stage and even landed her a nomination for a Laurence Olivier Theatre Award for Best Actress of 2003, making her one of the youngest ever to receive that honor. This particular photo was from a different production though, Sexual Perversity in Chicago with Hank Azaria and Matthew Perry.
2005 – Mrs. Henderson Presents
We’re now 10 years into Reilly’s acting career! This year she made a splash in the Judi Dench film Mrs. Henderson Presents as Maureen and also played the small but memorable role of Caroline Bingley in the Kiera Knightly film Pride & Prejudice.
Around this time though she caught the notice of the Cannes Film Festival where she won Best Newcomer Award for playing Wendy in Russian Dolls, the sequel to Pot Luck (L’Auberge Espagnole) which she also appeared in as well as the third subsequent film Chinese Puzzle.
2007 – Othello
Another notable moment from Reilly’s stage career was her performance as Desdemona in Othello, which landed her another Olivier award nomination. She starred in the highly praised production opposite fellow Brits Chiwetel Ejiofor and Ewan McGregor.
2008- Eden Lake
Reilly’s first leading role came with the horror film Eden Lake with Michael Fassbender. She also had a smaller role in the more mainstream Zac Efron film Me and Orson Welles.
2009 – Sherlock Holmes
One of Reilly’s most recognizable film roles is Mary Morstan (eventually Mary Watson) in Sherlock Holmes and Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows with Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr. She plays the onscreen love of Jude Law’s Dr. John Watson.
2010- Above Suspicion
If you love true crime or Law & Order, consider checking out this British series where Reilly plays rookie detective Anna Travis who is tasked with investigating a series of murders. She appeared in this series, based on the Anna Travis crime novels, for four seasons 2009-2012.
2012 – Flight
2012 landed Reilly opposite Sam Rockwell in A Single Shot, but everyone probably best remembers her opposite Denzel Washington in his Oscar nominated performance in Flight.
2014- Black Box
The same year Reilly appeared in Heaven Is For Real and Calvary, she led her own ABC series for one season. She played Catherine Black, a neurologist who solves difficult cases while dealing with her own secret bipolar disorder. This is one I need to check out!
2015 – True Detective
In season 2 of HBO’s popular series True Detective, Reilly played Jordan Semyon, the onscreen wife of one of the season’s leads, Vince Vaughn.
2018 – Britannia
In another series led by Reilly, we have Britannia, a co-production between Sky and Amazon Prime Video. Though the series released its third season in 2021, Reilly only appeared as Kerra for one season. And thank goodness because that freed up her schedule to land Beth Dutton!
2021 – Yellowstone
Which brings us to today! Reilly became a fast favorite in the role of Beth Dutton, Kevin Costner’s onscreen daughter in Paramount Network’s modern western. Not only is she one of the toughest women on television, but her onscreen romance with Rip Wheeler (Cole Hauser) will definitely go down as one of the best TV love stories of all time.