Kevin Costner wants to split his epic western horizon into four films

Kevin Costner has big plans for his long-awaited fourth directorial effort, “Horizon,” an epic western that will go into production at the end of August.

The “Yellowstone” star told Variety that the project, which is hosted at Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema, is being planned as “four different movies” and that “every three months they will be released”.

“It’s all different movies that connect, so you’re watching a saga of these stories that are happening,” said the actor, who was in London doing press for the UK launch of Paramount+.

Costner said the film is currently scaling and “trying to fill” 170 speaking roles.

Announced in April, “Horizon” is Costner’s first directing project since the western “Open Range” in 2003. His other two films were “The Post Man” (1997), in which he starred as a drifter in a uniform. postman to explore America, and the Civil War-era classic “Dances With Wolves” (1990), which won Costner the best director award at the 1991 Academy Awards, along with six other Academy Awards.

Produced by Costner’s Territory Pictures company, “Horizon” will span 15 years in the US’s western frontier settlement, and focus on both settlers and indigenous groups who first occupied the land.

“It’s a very beautiful story; It’s a difficult story,” Costner said. Variety. “It really involves a lot of women, to be honest. There are a lot of men in it too, but the women are very strong in ‘Horizon’. It’s just them trying to survive every day in a world that was incredibly difficult. they were often [dragged] to these places because that was where men wanted to go; women followed their men. They didn’t ask to be in these unstable and dangerous territories, and life wasn’t easy. I chose to make sure that this was really obvious, that it wasn’t easy, and how vulnerable people were.”

Asked whether the film’s four-part setup can lend “Horizon” to a streaming piece, Costner said the project was sold as an “event television movie” but that “what [the studio does] with that it will really be up to them because things change very quickly in how people want to see things and what they want to do.

“I’m happier because at a point on TV – where you can have your biggest audience – they’re going to see it the way I intended it to be seen. It will eventually be cut into [hour-long episodes] or 42 minutes — however, the TV works. But your first viewing will be like four 2-hour, 45-minute movies. And every three months, one will leave. If you’re interested in these characters, the hope is that you’ll really want to watch the next one, but it won’t be in hourly segments.”

“Horizon” currently has a 220-day filming schedule. While the first film will shoot this fall, the next three will be filmed starting in April 2023 with the trio of titles filming “at the same time”.

“So I’m probably going to shoot for eight months,” Costner said. “It’s a mountain – a mountain of time.”

“I’m more pressured than ever in my life about the responsibilities and the amount of decisions I have to make every day, between doing what I do every day for ‘Yellowstone’ and my own [work]. There are a lot of people behind me waiting for me to make decisions and stuff like that.”

Costner is currently filming season 5 of Taylor Sheridan’s hit Paramount Network series “Yellowstone,” in which he plays John Dutton, whose family owns the biggest ranch in Montana and must constantly fight to keep it.

Season 5, which airs later this year, will find Dutton facing intense pressure to hold his ground, Costner said.

“It was created in the sense that there’s so much pressure on what’s coming up for his land that he’s going to have to do something, so let’s see what he’s done and does to stay ahead of that and I think that’s what John Dutton has to do. do, but the pressures on the land have always been for this family, [that they’ve] I have to hold him down with a level of violence,” Costner said.

“The walls pressing [John] it’s environmentalists, Native American issues, politicians, the public clamor for more land. So he’s dealing with really modern problems.”

Costner said that “[doesn’t] Know Anything” about a potential Season 6, and didn’t elaborate on his thoughts on the “1883” spinoffs and the upcoming “1923” series.

“I don’t know where it’s going,” Costner said. “I think people feel they’ve hit a formula and want to stick with it. I know they want to make a decent story out of it. People are capitalizing on that and I hope they’re doing it in an elegant and smart way.”

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