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'I Don't Need Drama': Kevin Costner Addresses His 'Yellowstone' Exit After Major Demands to Studio Were Exposed

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Kevin Costner is said to be in crisis and desperate to turn his luck around in the wake of his bitter divorce and movie flop.

Jun. 25 2024, Published 12:00 p.m. ET

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Kevin Costner has addressed his departure from Yellowstone after confirming he would not be returning to Paramount Network's hit western TV drama following months of bitter negotiations, has learned.

“It wasn’t tough,” Costner told The Hollywood Reporter about the announcement. “It was a necessary decision to say, ‘Hey, OK, I don’t want to really talk about this anymore. It’s time to move on.'”

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Costner said he originally negotiated $12 million to film seasons five, six, and seven of 'Yellowstone.'

“I gave this thing five seasons,” Costner added. “I was really happy to do it. And I don’t need drama. So, let’s just take that drama away, let’s take the guessing [away]. The fans have been way too good to me. And my obligation is to go on and continue to make things that mean something to them.”

The actor, who had played patriarch John Dutton on the series since 2018, reportedly demanded "script approval" and final say over how his character exited the show — but the studio refused.

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Costner had a 'moral death' clause in his contract related to his character, John Dutton.

Kevin Costner
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Costner had also demanded an extremely short filming schedule so that he could continue filming Horizon: An America Saga. He wrote, directed, stars in, and reportedly spent $38 million of his own money to finance the planned multi-part series; the first movie is out June 28 and is expected to earn just $12 million on opening weekend, and Part 2 will hit theaters in August.

“I owe the fans the best movie I can make,” Costner explained. “If I give up movies and don’t want to make anymore, that’s my business. But if I choose to make movies, I have the fans right on my shoulder. And not to cater to them, but to kind of take them in a direction maybe they didn’t even think something could possibly go so. I make [movies] for people. It’s not my movie anymore, it’s the fans’ that have supported me. It’s for them ... Well, I’m not saying they are [going to like it], but I’m saying I think if I like it, I think they will like it.”

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Costner broke the news to fans in an Instagram video.

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Costner officially announced his departure in a video posted on social media last week. "Hi everyone, I just want to reach out and let you know that after this long year and a half of working on Horizon and doing all the things that that's required and thinking about Yellowstone, that beloved series that I love, that I know you love, I just realized that I'm not going to be able to continue season 5B or into the future," he said.

"It was something that really changed me. I loved it. And I know you loved it. And I just wanted to let you know that I won't be returning," Costner added. "I love the relationship we've been able to develop, and I'll see you at the movies."



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