Dax Shepard joins ‘The Ranch’ cast in wake of Danny Masterson’s exit

Dax Shepard is headed to The Ranch a few months after Danny Masterson’s departure.

The Parenthood alum has signed on to the Netflix’s Colorado-set comedy for a meaty guest arc in season 3. He’ll pop up as Luke Matthews, a former soldier who has ties to the Iron River Ranch, which is run by the Bennett family. Luke will bond and match wits with Colt (Ashton Kutcher) and Bennett patriarch Beau (Sam Elliott), but his past may come back to haunt him.

Netflix splits The Ranch seasons in two 10-episode halves, and Shepard’s first appearance will arrive in the second half of season 3. The first 10 episodes of season 3 are expected to debut later this year. Masterson, who played Colt’s brother, Rooster, was ousted from the show in December amid sexual assault accusations. (He has denied the allegations and said at the time of his dismissal that he was “very disappointed” in the streamer’s decision.) Masterson had filmed episodes for the first half of season 3, and it’s unclear how his character will be written out of the show.

Although it seems as if Shepard’s casting could be filling a void, he is not serving as a direct replacement for Masterson, and will appear in about half of those 10 episodes, according to Deadline. He is in second position for The Ranch, as he will star with Lake Bell in the Fox comedy pilot Bless This Mess.

Shepard — who started out his career playing practical jokes on Kutcher’s hit MTV show Punk’d — recently guest-starred on The Good Place, Ghosted, and Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later. He also wrote, directed, and starred in CHiPs on the big screen.

 

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