Christopher Heyerdahl
Cast member Christopher Heyerdahl poses at the premiere screening of AMC cable channel's new series "Hell on Wheels" in Los Angeles October 27, 2011. Reuters/Fred Prouser

The major face-off between Cullen and The Swede will be “in-your-face” in the next part of “Hell on Wheels” Season 5, Executive Producer John Wirth teased in a recent interview. The TV series is heading for an epic conclusion with two companies racing to complete the first Transcontinental Railroad, and Cullen will have to face multiple challenges from different villains this year.

[Spoiler alert]

“I think everyone has been waiting for these two guys to take the gloves off,” Wirth told CarterMatt. The producer explained that for a long time the writers grappled with what happens when Cullen (Anson Mount) meets The Swede (Christopher Heyerdahl), after the latter killed Lilly (Dominique McElligott).

Wirth said that Cullen’s natural reaction would be to pull out his gun and shoot The Swede in the face. However, both the characters are stars of the show and the producer pointed out that it was hard to kill either of them in such a confrontation.

The confrontation did happen eventually, with The Swede knocking on Cullen’s door. The scene was written by Jami O’Brien. “Hell on Wheels” Season 5 has so far teased the buildup of a major confrontation between the two characters.

The producer teased that this confrontation will now be more “in-your-face” this year. However, The Swede is not the only character that Cullen will need to be concerned about. Chang (Byron Mann) has proven to be shrewd villain, and he has been growing more belligerent with each passing episode.

Wirth teased that “Hell on Wheels” Season 5 need not be the end of the franchise. He revealed that his contract with Entertainment One, which owns the rights for the show, allows him to pitch story ideas for novels. The producer has so far not written anything, but has been thinking about it “on and off.”