Mayor Of Kingstown’s Taylor Handley Gushes Over Jeremy Renner, And The ‘Brotherly Love’ Both The Actors And Characters Share

It was pretty epic to see Jeremy Renner and Kyle Chandler kicking ass and taking names as the McLusky brothers in the first episode of Mayor of Kingstown. However, following the tragic death of Chandler’s character in the first episode, the brotherly relationship that has been around through the first two seasons of the show is between Renner and Taylor Handley, who plays the youngest of the McLusky brothers Kyle. Now, Handley is opening up to CinemaBlend about his relationship with the show’s lead actor, and the “brotherly love” their characters share. 

Taylor Handley Gushes About Working With Jeremy Renner

While chatting about the upcoming second season of Mayor of Kingstown, Handley talked about how his relationship with Renner has evolved from Season 1 to Season 2. He also mentioned, that working with the Wind River star was a dream come true. 

You know, Jeremy is one of my favorite actors. I told him that after Season 1, I wrote him a card. I was like, ‘dude, you've been one of my favorite actors since I saw you in S.W.A.T.’ So to get to work with him, opposite him is it's just fantastic. Working with him makes me a better actor. And so when you're working with him, and you know, I can mess up all I want, [and] he'll always help you out. He'll always, you know, pick you up. The man's incapable of saying an untruthful word of dialogue. And so I have the utmost respect for him. And just a solid, great guy. Just overall.

Hugh Dillon, the show’s co-creator, said a similar thing about Renner. While discussing how relieved he was when Renner sent him a video after his snow plow accident, Dillon also explained that the actor is “relentless,” “driven,” and “wants to find that honesty.” He also explained that Renner’s performance in Season 2 is incredible and transformative, comparing him to Robert DeNiro in Raging Bull

Handley had another take on Renner’s nuanced performance in Season 2, and the brotherly dynamic the two share, he said: 

Our relationship is, you know, as brothers in the show, you see a lot more of it. Whereas last year, he was kind of solo working on his stuff and Kyle’s working on his stuff, this season they come together, and you see a lot more of that brotherly dynamic.

It’s so exciting to know we’ll be seeing more of Kyle and Mikes’ relationship in Season 2, especially after the traumatic prison riot at the end of Season 1. And based on what Handley said, he’s also super excited about how his character’s relationship with his older brother has grown. 

Taylor Handley Discusses Kyle and Mikes’ Relationship On Mayor Of Kingstown 

When it comes to the characters Handley and Renner play on screen, the actor behind Kyle was clear about how much they love each other, saying: 

Well, there always is a constant brotherly love that Kyle and Mike have.

While we did see a lot of Mike and Kyle together in Season 1, they were both on different paths with only the occasional crossover. However, Handley said we’ll be seeing more of them together in Season 2, and not only that, because of the traumatic events of Season 1, they'll be more supportive than ever. 

[Their relationship is] touched upon in Season 1, there wasn't a lot of well, actually, you know, thinking about it, there was you know, Kyle would go and hang out with Mike and they would just kind of debrief about their day and debrief about the situations that they are going through. So it's more of that [in Season 2], but now you have been through trauma and you know, really sketchy situations with these characters. I feel like it just means more this season.

I know I’m super curious and excited to see the two together more on-screen. To me, the familial aspect of Mayor of Kingstown is one of the best parts of the show, and after everything Kyle, Mike and the McLuskys have been through it’s nice to see that when the world is seemingly against them, they have each other.

This was a point Handley touched on as well, saying the brothers always have “each other’s backs, no matter what.” 

And really, we double down on having each other's backs, no matter what. I think there's a point where I'm telling him like ‘We're all we got, you know, like you and me, like the other brothers gone like now it's you and me. We're all we got. We gotta you know, I ride for you die for you.’ You know, we're brothers till the end.

As Mayor of Kingstown gets further into its second season, and Aiden Gillen’s big bad crime boss Milo becomes a bigger part of the picture, it’ll be nice to see Kyle and Mike supporting each other even more. It’s also wonderful to hear Handley talk about his relationship with Renner and how much he loves working with him, while the Avengers star recovers from his accident

Dillon has talked about plans for Season 3 of Kingstown, and with Renner on his way back to full health, and Handley speaking so positively about working with the actor, I’d love to see more of the McLusky brothers kicking ass and taking names on this Taylor Sheridan show for years to come. 

If you are interested in watching Mayor of Kingstown, the new episodes drop every Sunday according to the 2023 TV schedule, and all you need is a Paramount+ subscription

Riley Utley
Weekend Editor

Riley Utley is the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. She has written for national publications as well as daily and alt-weekly newspapers in Spokane, Washington, Syracuse, New York and Charleston, South Carolina. She graduated with her master’s degree in arts journalism and communications from the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. Since joining the CB team she has covered numerous TV shows and movies -- including her personal favorite shows Ted Lasso and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. She also has followed and consistently written about everything from Taylor Swift to Fire Country, and she's enjoyed every second of it.