Has ‘Yellowstone’ finally made Kevin Costner America’s undisputed king of Westerns?

LOS ANGELES (AP) – While a healthy group of Americans await Sunday’s return from the movie “Yellowstone,” star Kevin Costner is in Moab, Utah, searching for another location. Western epic, “Horizon.”

Costner’s 60-some film credits, among them “Field of Dreams,” “The Character,” “JFK” and “Bull Durham,” are a mix of comedy, baseball drama and sometimes fun. But the West’s history and land has proven to be a creative bedrock.

His breakout role came in 1985’s “Silverado,” followed by a starring role in “Dances with Wolves,” his Oscar-winning directorial debut; “Wyatt Earp,” and “Open Range,” which he also directed. He put the actor-director Stetson on again for “Horizon,” a planned four-film series about the pre- and post-Civil War West.

Paramount Network’s current “Yellowstone,” created by Taylor Sheridan (“Hell or High Water”), has already spawned a successful prequel, “1883.” A second, “1923” (previously called “1932”), with Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren as its lead, is scheduled for December 18 release.

In its fifth season, “Yellowstone” opens with Costner’s Montana rancher John Dutton awaiting the outcome of his refusal to run for governor – a major challenge to protect his family’s large ranch and business venture. against competition from producers and supporting Native Americans.

Dutton’s populist-style campaign promises to protect Montana’s values, or perhaps those that dovetail with the interests he went to the extreme to protect. Does Costner himself want to find work? “No, I don’t think so,” he said.

Watch “YELLOWSTONE” live for free: Philo (free trial) | FuboTV (free trial) | DirecTV Stream (free trial). Also, Sling has ads.

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In an interview with The Associated Press, he discussed why “Yellowstone” has gained such a following, Native American films, and his long-standing interest in the Western genre. nice The speech has been edited to be clear and concise.

Kevin Costner

This photo released by the Paramount Network shows Kevin Costner in a scene from “Yellowstone.” (Paramount Network on AP)AP


AP: When you teamed up with Taylor Sheridan on the film, what made you think it could work?

KEVIN COSTNER: I think it has an opportunity to be relevant, in that this work is still going on in America and most people take for granted how things end up on their dinner tables. We intuitively know, and we never know. The show is able to tell the beautiful times of ranching, and it really tells how difficult it is. We are set in one of the most beautiful places in the world, and I think the idea of ​​mountains and rivers captures people’s imagination. But it is a place to work. That’s how it still works. I think he speaks well of that, as well as his sense of the arts.

AP: When John Dutton says he’s not a politician, he’s looking for power and there’s more to it than just advocacy that he intends to use for his own ends. How do you see the character?

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KEVIN COSTNER: He’s not naive. He is not a politician in the sense that he wants to cooperate. I think he has the ability to hear the best idea, but he is not looking for the middle. That’s not how he lived his life. What is good for his ranch may be good for all the rest of the ranches in Montana as well – preservation of the way of life, less expansion. His ranch is highlighted, he said loudly. But I think he saw this work for other ranchers.

AP: ‘Yellowstone’ essentially includes Native Americans, as does ‘Dances with Wolves.’ How do you view the series approach to characters?

KEVIN COSTNER: I think they show it’s very difficult. For them, everything has been removed, and they have had this little thing called gambling and even been nibbled at, being pawed. Any time there is money, there will be conflict no matter what you are dealing with. So you see the power play in the Native American community. You see ambition, you see selfishness. He is a really good character. We may flinch at it, we may be embarrassed by it, but it exists on every level. The political control of the phenomenon of rez (reservation) is equal to the phenomenon of our country. There is resentment, there is resentment. There are good ideas, there are bad ideas. So who was left in the lurch? Generally speaking, it is the people.

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This photo released by the Paramount Network shows Kevin Costner, from left, Kelly Reilly and Wes Bentley in a scene from “Yellowstone.” (Paramount Network on AP)AP

AP: The movie received a Screen Actors Guild nomination for best drama but was overshadowed by the Emmys. Could that reflect bias against Westerns?

KEVIN COSTNER: I’m not sure, because we’re very informative. We are not reduced to ‘yep’ and ‘no.’ He is very readable in his teaching. You can be belittled, you can be marginalized, you can be ignored. But we were able to create a show that didn’t start out popular but did it on its own terms.

AP: You’ve said that watching the 1962 film ‘How the West Was Made’ at a young age sparked your interest in Westerns. What chord did it strike and why did the genre stick with you?

KEVIN COSTNER: When it’s done well, you know how dangerous (people) can be. We see highways and cities now, but if you go back 120 years, you’re out here by yourself. How you do it or not depends sometimes on your decision and mostly on luck. Without law, without an army, we have stripped the land of the people who have lived there for thousands of years. I thought to myself, ‘My God, what made people come to the West?’ Sometimes they don’t share the same language, they are from different countries in Europe. When I see it in its rawest form, I am inspired by it, I appreciate it. I know that what drives people across the country is nothing but the hope of something better than where they came from.


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