warner bros.

Kevin Costner is a Hollywood mainstay, but it’s fair to say that the directorial side of his career has ebbed and flowed. For every Open Range and Dances With Wolves, there’s a Waterworld or The Postman, but Costner persists. He’s determined to bring the world his Horizon: An American Saga in four parts, for which two films are already finished and on the theatrical schedule. The final pair’s survival will depend upon how the first half fares with audiences, but Costner is in it to win it, even if that meant saying goodbye to John Dutton on Yellowstone in the midst of the Taylor Sheridan force of nature’s final season.

Much of the current Costner chatter revolves around him setting his record straight on what, exactly, went wrong with the timing of his rebooted movie career and scheduling for his Taylor Sheridan show’s final episodes. Yet the Field of Dreams star knows his current and most enduring audience, and he asked them to expect a different kind of Western experience than is usually found onscreen because Horizon does not revolve around a previously established settlement. And it’s time to get down to cowboy business with what fans will see in Chapter 1 arriving soon.

Plot

Costner previously let Variety know that his four-part saga will allow the audience to “in a sense, feel themselves in this movie.” That statement sits alongside the fact that Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 takes place in the 1860s during the U.S. Civil War from the viewpoint of settlers in the American West. Costner believed so strongly in this project that he’s going full James Cameron here.

That is to say, Horizon was preannounced as several films without waiting for a studio greenlight after a traditional box-office run. Costner even decided to make that leap because (as he told Hollywood Reporter) “When no one wanted to make the first one, I got the bright idea to make four.” That’s a difficult goal to finance in the 2020s from any angle, but perhaps even more so for Costner, who has had his share of big-budget directorial busts. Still, he believes in this project enough to have poured many millions of his own money into the endeavor and even sold his ranch to do so. Heck, Costner declared that he would sell even more homes if necessary, and he’s even hitting the early days of filming Chapter 3 before the first film arrives.

Costner’s Yellowstone audience should be fairly sticky for these movies, and he did pull off a standing ovation that ran (accounts do differ on length) anywhere from 7-10 minutes, during which those eyes did not remain dry:

That ovation (and his obvious gratitude) hopefully helped him raise funding in Cannes, and perhaps those unsubtle negative reviews, including from Ryan Lattanzio of Indiewire, who described the film as though Costner was “trying to out-Taylor Sheridan Taylor Sheridan.”

However, Warner Bros. had enough faith to bet big on releasing two Horizon films within months of each other. Here’s the Chapter 1 synopsis:

In the great tradition of Warner Bros. Pictures’ iconic Westerns, “Horizon: An American Saga” explores the lure of the Old West and how it was won—and lost—through the blood, sweat and tears of many. Spanning the four years of the Civil War, from 1861 to 1865, Costner’s ambitious cinematic adventure will take audiences on an emotional journey across a country at war with itself, experienced through the lens of families, friends and foes all attempting to discover what it truly means to be the United States of America.

Cast

Costner, of course, stars in the movie. He has also pulled together a vast ensemble cast befitting a tale of the frontier. Those actors include Sienna Miller, Tom Payne, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Jamie Campbell Bower, Abbey Lee, Michael Rooker, Danny Huston, Luke Wilson, Owen Crow Shoe, Angus Macfadyen, Tatanka Means, Isabelle Fuhrman, Jeff Fahey, Will Patton, Amos Jason Charging Cloud, Bodhi Okuma Linton, Giovanni Ribisi, Gregory Cruz, James Russo, nd Ella Hunt.

Release Date

Horizon: An American Saga will arrive with Chapter 1 in theaters on June 28. The already completed Chapter 2 will follow on August 16.

Trailer

And so the saga begins:

Source: https://uproxx.com/movies/horizon-an-american-saga-chapter-1-details-update-may-2024-kevin-costner-yellowstone-taylor-sheridan/