Krueger was born in Appleton, Wisconsin and grew up in Sarasota, Florida. He made his acting debut shortly after moving to Los Angeles in late 2009 in an episode of The CW's 90210. Over the next few years he made a number of guest star and recurring appearances in notable television shows like Pretty Little Liars, Workaholics, Parenthood and Two And a Half Men.
In 2013, Krueger was cast in a recurring role on The Originals, The CW's spinoff of hit show The Vampire Diaries. His character, Josh, was the first gay character introduced on the series  and was originally slated to appear in three episodes However, Josh quickly became a fan favorite and at the end of 2013, Krueger was named one of TV's Top Scene Stealers of the year by E! News. He was promoted to a series regular role and remained an integral part of the show through its final season in 2018.
Since the finale of The Originals, Krueger continued to work on a number of television shows. In November 2019 it was announced that he was joining the cast of the Showtime pilot Yellowjackets, directed by Karyn Kusama, as a series regular. Krueger plays Ben Scott, the assistant coach of the high school girls' soccer team that is stranded in the mountains after surviving a plane crash 25 years ago. Yellowjackets debuted in November 2021. Also in 2021, Krueger played a recurring role as Heath on the third season of Roswell, New Mexico.
The series premiered on Showtime on November 14, 2021. It has received critical acclaim, particularly for its story and the performances of the cast. Its accolades include seven Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series and acting nominations for Lynskey and Ricci. In December 2021, the series was renewed for a second season, which premiered on March 26, 2023. In December 2022, the series was renewed for a third season.
Lyle and Nickerson pitched the series with a 35-minute presentation, which included talks about the first season's ending and a five-season storyline. The series was originally going to take place in the 1970s and the 1990s, but both time periods were moved twenty years forward to make the setting more familiar to viewers. Nickerson said the use of two timelines allowed for the studying of interpersonal dynamics and how trauma can affect one's life. HBO was a contender to purchase the series but ultimately rejected it, in part due to its similarities with Euphoria, one of its own properties. Lyle says the smartest question she heard during the pre-production phase was from HBO's Francesca Orsi and David Levine, who asked, \"What are you trying to say with this show\" In his answer, Nickerson said the show was going to deconstruct the \"organizing principles of a society\". Yellowjackets was eventually sold to The Mark Gordon Company, a production company owned by Entertainment One. The project was then pitched to Gary Levine, president of entertainment for Showtime Networks, who was immediately on board. On May 9, 2018, Showtime announced it had acquired the rights to the series.
On December 16, 2021, after the first five episodes aired, the series was renewed for a second season. Levine said they had \"not heard the pitch for season 2, the writers' room has not even come together yet, they are going to come together in January. I'm sure Ashley, Bart, and Jonathan have some loose ideas but they hadn't fleshed out their ideas and they certainly haven't conveyed them to us.\" On February 9, 2022, Levine said the creators had \"always given us hints about things to come, but we haven't done a long-range plan. We wanted to make the first season count. We've all buried ourselves in that first season and worked hard to make it the success it was. They [last week] went into the writer's room and with Jonathan Lisco to start to unearth what can happen in season two. I love that they have some general idea of a five-year arc, but we take it one season at a time and get very granular about making it satisfying.\" By May 2022, the writers were \"just getting started on the actual scripts.\" On December 15, 2022, three months before the premiere of the second season, Showtime renewed the series for a third season.
The pilot episode was not written with any actresses in mind and auditions were held in Los Angeles. \"We decided pretty early on we weren't going to get overly focused on a physical match,\" Lyle mentioned. As a result, some cast members had to dye their hair and wear contact lenses to match the physical characteristics of their counterparts. Melanie Lynskey was the first person to join the cast. Lyle said the role of Shauna was \"the trickiest to cast\" because they \"wanted to find an actress who could embody somebody who is really trying to figure out who they are, which is kind of a tricky internal thing to express through her acting.\" Lynskey questioned the showrunners and extracted as much information as she could about her character's past and the five-season storyline to improve her performance. For the role of Natalie, Nickerson said they searched for \"someone who was really free-spirited and unique who could play both a sort of wildness and a vulnerability.\" Though most of the auditions were held in-person, Sophie Thatcher submitted a self-recorded audition tape and was cast as Natalie before Juliette Lewis, who portrays the character's adult counterpart. When asked if the group's survival would depend on their gender, Thatcher replied, \"I think naturally, especially at such a young age, women are more emotionally intelligent. So to turn into that cannibalistic mindset ... it maybe took them longer just because I think women are smarter than men. But I think that's it. Besides that, there's no difference. They're going to go batshit crazy.\"
Casting for the second season began in mid-2022. In August 2022, Lauren Ambrose and Simone Kessell joined the cast to play the adult versions of Van and Lottie; their roles were also upped from recurring to series regulars. Elijah Wood and Nuha Jes Izman were also added to the cast in season-long recurring guest roles, while Kevin Alves's role as teenage Travis was upped from recurring to series regular. Wood will play Walter, \"new citizen detective who is not represented by a younger self on the show\". Jason Ritter, who is married to Melanie Lynskey, guest stars in one episode of the second season.
In January 2023, Variety reported that Keeya King, who played teen Akilah in season one, had exited the series. Her role was recast with Nia Sondaya. Nicole Maines was cast as Lisa, an associate of adult Lottie attempting to recover from past trauma. Additionally, François Arnaud will guest-star in four episodes portraying Paul. His character is described as \"a New York writer and secret boyfriend of Coach Scott (Steven Kreuger) who reminds Coach Scott of what might have been\".
In December 2020, Showtime gave Yellowjackets a series order. Filming restarted in Vancouver on May 3, 2021, and concluded in early October, with the young and older cast taking weekly turns to shoot their scenes. Aside from Vancouver, other filming locations included the Panther Paintball & Airsoft Sports Park in Surrey, which was used as the site of the plane crash, and The Bridge Studios in Burnaby. The plane crash scene took two days to shoot. The orgy scene from episode nine was organized with intimacy coordinator Katherine Kadler. Eaton described it as \"uncomfortable scene to shoot\" due to its depiction of sexual assault. In an interview, Lynskey said Cypress, Ricci, and Lewis stood up for her after she was body shamed by a crew member, with Lewis writing a letter to the producers on her behalf. In November 2021, Purnell summarized the timeline of the production: \"Here's how it went; we shot the pilot, we took like a year and a half off in COVID and then we went to Canada and shot the whole season in six months. We were in this super intense immersive bubble. We wrapped three weeks ago and now I'm doing a press junket. It's been crazy.\"
Filming for the second season began in August 2022, with the first episode directed by Daisy von Scherler Mayer. In early February 2023, the cast of the 1990s timeline of the series completed filming their scenes.
The music for the pilot was composed by Theodore Shapiro. The rest of the first season was scored by Craig Wedren and Anna Waronker, members of the rock bands Shudder to Think and That Dog, respectively. Wedren was invited to the series by Kusama after the series was picked up and Shapiro was unable to return. The main theme song, \"No Return\", was written and performed by Wedren and Waronker, who said they \"aimed to channel our off-kilter '90s roots into something that felt like 'then', but could only have been made now, just like the show.\" Lyle and Nickerson were initially hesitant with the idea of featuring a theme song due to their growing rarity in the mainstream but were eventually convinced otherwise. \"Mother Mother\" by Tracy Bonham was used as the temp music for the theme, which first appears in episode three and features the sounds of a Farfisa organ. According to Wedren, \"The producers really, really encouraged us to go out on multiple limbs and really be experimental and try stuff, which is such a rare direction to get.\" Lakeshore Records made \"No Return\" available to stream and download on January 6, 2022. A soundtrack album was also released on Spotify.
A premiere for the series was held on November 10, 2021, at the Hollywood Legion Post 43 in Los Angeles. Yellowjackets debuted on Showtime on November 14. The second season premiered on March 26, 2023, and the episode will be available two days earlier to stream for Showtime subscribers.
The first six out of ten episodes of the first season were given to critics to review ahead of the series premiere. Entertainment Weekly's Kristen Baldwin graded the show with a B+ and gave praise to the performances and its story: 59ce067264