Kevin Costner returns to directing with a massive four-part western

The actor, who has already directed three films including Dancing with the wolves (1990), launches into a large realistic fresco, available in four films of 2h45 each, on the history of the American West.

In 1990, he directed his first film Dancing with the wolves. A few weeks after his release, the Academy of the Oscars decided to crown him by awarding him the trophy for best director. Encouraged by this triumphant first attempt, Kevin Costner continued his momentum with Postman (1997) and Open Range (2003). And today, after almost two decades of filmmaking, he returns to directing. The project is to his measure since he now wants to direct a large realistic fresco on the epic of the American West, which he will decline in four successive films.

The contours of its ambition have been modified in recent months. Initially, he had imagined making only one “serious” western to tell the epic of what was once called the conquest of the West. But starting to work concretely on his work, thought of as a kind of historical western, Kevin Costner changed his mind and decided to divide his fresco into four parts as he admitted to our American colleague variety: “ It will ultimately be a saga in four films. Each scenario will be different but all will form a single coherent whole“.

The director of Dancing with the wolves don’t want to waste any more time. Procrastination is not his forte. From the month of August, he will start looking for his actors. The casting plans nearly 170 auditions.

A deconstruction of the history of the American West

To write the scenarios with him, Costner hired a big name in the business, the Scottish Jon Baird, who has already collaborated with Martin Scorsese, Matthew Vaughn and Terence Winter. We already know that each episode of the saga will retrace the conquest of the West before and after the Civil War (1861-1865). The four feature films will retrace periods of fifteen years and the accent will be placed on the colonizing will of the “conquerorsabout Indigenous peoples, including Native Americans.

The terms of the broadcast of the saga are not yet fixed. Theatrical release or cutting into short episodes for television and streaming platforms, the director of this fresco, which has the working title Horizon, has not yet decided. However Kevin Costner, influenced by the success of the series Yellowstone who deconstructs the myth of the American West, could lean more surely for the second solution. A crucial decision that he should now take in the coming months.

Yellowstone series by Taylor Sheridan and John Linson, in 2018, broadcast in France in 2022, with Kevin Costner, Luke Grimes…


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