Kevin Costner Discusses Son Hayes' Acting Debut In 'horizon'
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Kevin Costner Discusses Son Hayes' Acting Debut In 'horizon'

On Tuesday, the famed 69-year-old actor-director spoke exclusively with ET's Cassie DiLaura during the Warner Bros. Pictures presentation at CinemaCon 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he revealed that he named his now-15-year-old son after the protagonist he plays in his decades-in-the-making Western epic. Fast forward to now, and Hayes will make his acting debut in the film that Costner began working on in the late 1980s.  

"I named him after my character in this. "My character's name is Hayes Ellison," Costner told ET. "I gave that character the name Hayes. So I was watching him grow up and thought, 'Man, I better get with it and make this movie.'"

Horizon has been in development for more than 30 years. It took so long to develop, owing to Costner's popularity in Hollywood. But he never lost sight of his objective of bringing Horizon to the big screen, and what followed was a journey of hope propelled by his unwavering tenacity. Costner said it took him and co-writer Jon Baird six years to write the scripts for his four-film odyssey, which began at Disney and later moved to Warner Bros. And as the months grew into years, and the years into decades, Costner's determination and quest remained as fervent as ever.

The cherry on top after all these years? Costner's kid is accompanying him on this endeavor.

"I captured him and I brought him on, and he's very good in this small part that he's done," Costner said with a smile. "If you see it, I think he has an impact on the movie."

Kevin Costner Discusses Son Hayes' Acting Debut in 'Horizon' and Final  Season of 'Yellowstone' (Exclusive) | Entertainment Tonight

Hayes, whom Costner shares with ex Christine Baumgartner, together with son Cayden, 16, and daughter Grace, 13, was not required to audition for the part.

"No, just listen. I don't give away great parts. "I understand that there are young actors out there who would kill for these roles," Costner stated. "So I have to respect the profession. However, in some cases, I believed he could handle the situation. I wanted him close, so I did it. So we're forever stuck together in a film. Actually, I'm not in any scenes with him, but I directed him when he was younger, and now he's big."

Horizon: An American Saga is set before and during the American Civil War and depicts the expansion of the American West. Overall, Costner's grandiose endeavor will include four films. According to the film's official synopsis, Horizon "explores the lure of the Old West and how it was won -- and lost—through the blood, sweat, and tears of many." Costner's ambitious cinematic adventure, which spans four years of the Civil War, from 1861 to 1865, will take audiences on an emotional journey across a country at war with itself, as seen through the eyes of families, friends, and foes all attempting to discover what it truly means to be an American."

Costner starred in, directed, and produced the two-part theatrical production. In an unusual move, Chapter One will open in theaters on June 28, followed by Chapter Two on August 16. The film's cast includes Danny Huston, Luke Wilson, Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Abbey Lee, Michael Rooker, Isabelle Fuhrman, Jeff Fahey, Will Patton, Tatanka Means, Owen Crow Shoe, Ella Hunt, and Jamie Campbell Bower.

Horizon became such an enormous undertaking that, in May 2023, Costner informed Deadline that he mortgaged "10 acres on the water in Santa Barbara" in order to get his passion project started. So, is Costner anxious about Chapter One's release?

"No," Costner informed ET. "I feel pretty happy about this film and what it accomplishes for me. It was the type of film I wished someone would create for me. That's what I prefer to see."

Yes, That Is Kevin Costner's Son in the Horizon: An American Saga Trailer

And speaking of cowboys, Costner spoke with ET about Yellowstone's forthcoming fifth and final season. The show was supposed to return in late 2023, but there was a lot of drama between Costner and co-creator Taylor Sheridan, not to mention the Hollywood strike. However, part two of season 5 is set to premiere in November, and Costner hopes to return to the show someday.

"I'd like to be able to do it but we haven't been able to," he added. "...I expected to make seven [seasons], but we're currently at five. So, I hope it works out, but they have a lot of other shows going on. Perhaps it will. Perhaps this will lead back to me. If it happens, and I'm completely comfortable with it, I'd love to do it."

And, yes, Costner admits he's considered how John Dutton's story ends in Yellowstone.

"Well, you know, he needs to be proactive in what occurs, and I've kind of got my own idea about how that may be," Costner remarked, "but that is Taylor's thing. I told him as much a while ago. I had some ideas about how it may happen, but we'll have to see."

And it appears that practically everyone, even Costner, is unaware of what will happen in the last season of Yellowstone. ET spoke with country starlet Lainey Wilson at the 2024 CMT Music Awards over the weekend in Austin, Texas, and she revealed she doesn't know much about the future installment. However, she stated that she would be astonished if her lovable character, Abby, did not show.

"I will be honest with you. "I would be shocked," Wilson told ET. "And I think how [series creator] Taylor Sheridan crafts his storylines, and he just has a lovely way of bringing things back and letting them go -- I'll be surprised. So, let's see what happens.