Fans of the Western drama Yellowstone have already gone into mourning over the news that the series is coming to a close—evidently in part due to the exit of star Kevin Costner. And while we’re still anxiously awaiting what fate will hold for John Dutton, for those who just can’t get enough Costner, there’s good news, because the actor is currently working on a four-film series called Horizon: An American Saga.
Here’s everything we know so far about Costner’s new, far-reaching project.
What’s it about?
At the moment, relatively little is known about the actual plot of the films. Per IMDB, the saga, which is co-written by Costner and Jon Baird, “chronicles a multi-faceted, 15-year span of pre-and post-Civil War expansion and settlement of the American west.”
It’s territory that’s more than familiar to Costner, who, in addition to his work on Yellowstone, garnered an Oscar for Best Director and a nomination for Best Actor in the Civil War drama Dances With Wolves and directed and starred in the 2033 Western, Open Range.
It’s Kevin Costner’s pet project.
Costner is putting his money where his mouth is on the sprawling project.
“I’ve mortgaged 10 acres on the water in Santa Barbara where I was going to build my last house,” the star told Deadline, “But I did it without a thought. It has thrown my accountant into a f*cking conniption fit. But it’s my life, and I believe in the idea and the story.”
It’s a story that’s been a long time percolating. “I commissioned this story in 1988. Single movie, two-hander. A conventional Western with a beginning, middle, and end. I couldn’t get anybody to make it,” he told the publication. “Eight years later, I started thinking about the story, started writing with a partner, and it ended up being four screenplays. So I reverse-engineered everything from 1988. I thought it was really good. But I still couldn’t get anybody to make it. … I don’t know why, but I have not let go of this one. I’ve pushed it into the middle of the table three times in my career and didn’t blink. This is my fourth.”
In addition to putting up the money for the films, Costner says he has also “basically deferred” all of his fees on the first two films, which, considering he’s serving as writer, director, producer, and an actor is certainly significant. “I’m never gonna do this again,” he laughed. “I’m never putting my f*cking money in another movie after these four.”
Still, he said, he sees the films as a worthwhile risk. “I gamble on the love of story. I’m gambling on people, in a sense. I can’t make them go to the theater, but if they get there, I’m going to try to take care of them the best I possibly can.”
“It’s really been the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but it’s exactly what I want to do,” he told People. ” In my career I’ve tried to choose not based on what was popular. I made the films I wanted to make.”
Costner, of course, has a starring role in the films. Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Ella Hunt, Will Patton, Luke Wilson, Isabelle Fuhrman, Thomas Haden Church, Michael Rooker, Glynn Turman, Kathleen Quinlan, and Giovanni Ribisi are all set to appear, though details about their individual roles remain scant.
Costner’s son, Hayes, will also appear in the film. “He’s very good,” Costner told People. “Hayes plays the namesake character that I actually play in the movie. He’s 13 years old and the screenplay’s been around longer than that.”
When does Horizon come out?
No official date has been announced for the premiere of the first film, but the movie is currently in post-production and Costner told Deadline in May 2023 that his hope is for the first installment to appear in the fall of this year. Meanwhile, production has already started on the second movie in the series.
Rumors suggest Horizon was part of the reason behind Kevin Costner’s Yellowstone exit.
While the star hasn’t spoken out on the precise reasons behind his decision to leave the hit Western drama—which is now scheduled to end after the final round of episodes premiere this fall—that hasn’t stopped speculation from abounding. Among the numerous rumors is word that Costner wanted to curtail his filming obligations on Yellowstone to focus on Horizon.