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Kevin Costner arrives for the Recording Academy and Clive Davis pre-Grammy gala at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills in 2023. © Getty

Kevin Costner reveals why he gambled $38million of his personal money

The Yellowstone star is a father to seven children

Faye James
Senior Editor
May 21, 2024
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In a bold move that perfectly encapsulates his dedication to the craft, Kevin Costner has invested a staggering $38 million of his own money into his ambitious project, Horizon: An American Saga

This revelation came to light during a candid interview with GQ, where the 69-year-old star of Yellowstone shared insights into his substantial personal and financial commitment to the two-part Western epic.

"That's the truth. That's the real number," Kevin confirmed, dispelling earlier rumors that he had spent $20 million. 

Despite finalizing his contentious divorce from Christine, 49, in February after 18 years of marriage, Kevin insisted that their split was "not related" to his "crazy" financial gamble. 

The Costner clan flank their dad Kevin© Getty
The Costner clan flank their dad Kevin

Drawing a parallel to the character Ahab from Herman Melville's Moby-Dick, he stated, "The white whale obsessed him so much that he would take everybody down with him. I take nobody down with me. I take the risk myself."

Kevin, who is believed to be dating Grammy-nominated singer Jewel, agreed to pay Christine $63,000 per month in child support for their three children: Cayden Wyatt, 16; Hayes Logan, 15; and Grace Avery, 13.

kevin costner mustache cannes film festival 2024© Getty Images
Kevin's new mustache stole the show

 Alongside personal challenges, Kevin has also faced professional hurdles, including disputes with Yellowstone creator Taylor Sheridan and delays caused by the WGA/SAG strikes, which have impacted the filming of Horizon. 

Undeterred, he remains focused on expanding the project to two additional films, despite not yet securing the necessary financing.

Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 trailer

Reflecting on his myriad responsibilities, Kevin said, "I have to deal with them. And I have to deal with them on a daily basis, emotionally, historically almost. And then there's the immediate needs of children. I'm not going to list the things — I'm going to stop right there with them. That is my job, looking at that, and dealing with that."

The star, who also fronts the band Modern West, acknowledged the immense pressure he faces: "Get up, Kevin. Get the f up and deal with this and find the joy every day of seeing your kids play while you're here — and then work your a** off to get this thing finished.'"

Horizon: An American Saga is set before and after the Civil War and will hit US theaters on June 28 and August 16. Kevin produced, wrote, directed, and stars as Hayes Ellison in this historical epic, a feat that he believes "has never been done" before in film history. 

kevin costner netflix golden globes after party 2024© Getty Images
Kevin gambled $38million of his own money for his film projects

Addressing the potential for failure, he remarked, "Well, if I think about [both films bombing], I'll just be frozen. I'm making Three right now. I was just out there scouting. I don't want to be frozen in my life."

Kevin's commitment to his vision extends beyond the immediate financial risks. He passionately shared, "What will define my life will be: Will people visit this movie 10 years from now? And I'm going to own that film. And so whatever commerce comes from that film, 10 years and 20 years from now, 30 years from now, I own that and so do my heirs."

Reflecting on his journey, Kevin added, "If my psychiatrist looked at me and they said, 'Kevin, let me get this straight. Nobody wanted to make one, right? At least at that point when you stopped, they didn't want to make it?' I said, 'Yeah.' And she goes, 'Why do you then go out and write four more? Why do you go and do that?' And I guess the answer is: Because I believe."

Kevin's determination is a trait he hopes his children will understand and appreciate about him: "That I do what I believe in," he emphasized, regardless of the outcome, be it the success of Dances with Wolves or the commercial failure of Waterworld and The Postman.

Kevin Costner speaks onstage during the Warner Bros. Pictures Presentation during CinemaCon 2024 at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on April 09, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada© Getty
Kevin Costner speaks onstage

Acknowledging the fear that comes with such a gamble, Kevin admitted, "I have fear like everybody else. I don't want to be humiliated. I mean, it's okay, maybe I lose the [beachfront property in Santa Barbara]. But it's: 'Have I lost myself?'"

His passion project, Horizon, which received a seven-minute standing ovation at the Cannes Film Festival, stars a stellar cast including Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Michael Rooker, Danny Huston, Luke Wilson, and Jamie Campbell Bower. Despite the initial mixed reviews, Kevin remains undeterred, driven by a belief in the long-term impact of his work.

Reflecting on his approach to life and work, Kevin concluded, "What am I supposed to do? I'm just not a dog that waits in a driveway not knowing when the person's going to come home. I want to know. And I also understood that their universe was really big, so I just decided not to sit in the driveway, but to be busy myself and be available when I could. It didn't end up happening."

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