“It was raw. It was dysfunctional”: Kevin Costner’s Confession on What Attracted Him to Yellowstone Becomes Even More Important as He Hints a Return

Kevin Costner was attracted to Yellowstone because of it's most unique dialogue and setting but his return still has a lot relying on other things.

kevin costner in yellowstone


  • Kevin Costner had to leave Yellowstone after multiple negotiations because of scheduling conflicts.
  • He had first joined the show because of its unique dialogues and settings.
  • The actor is willing to return if Taylor Sheridan would meet his needs and demands.
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Yellowstone has been the heart of Western television for a long time now. The way it managed to switch things up for the genre was extraordinary, with Kevin Costner and Taylor Sheridan at the center of it all. Everyone who worked on the show had a lot to say about it, much of it being positive. Fans and critics alike had a boatload of praise for the series as well.

kevin costner horizon- an american saga-2
Kevin Costner in Horizon: An American Saga | Credit: Warner Bros.

As the show nears its end, there is a lot for fans to do before the curtains close once and for all. Although there are spin-offs in the making, that is not sufficient for the gaping hole in Kevin Costner’s absence. Since the series chose to continue on despite his lack of availability, it was intriguing to understand what brought him on in the first place.

Kevin Costner was Wooed in One Episode

Kevin Costner was the face of Yellowstone for quite a long time. After his departure, there was a sudden shift in the pacing through which fans saw the show. What was it without Costner? However, Taylor Sheridan found a way to keep things going regardless. He had previously stated the reason for his unforeseen departure.

Kevin Costner as John Dutton in Yellowstone
Kevin Costner as John Dutton in Yellowstone | Credit: Paramount Network

I saw that the dialogue had a fun, realistic approach to it. It was raw. It was dysfunctional, Costner stated. And it was set against the backdrop of mountains and rivers and valleys and people on horseback, which is very appealing.

The actor had to leave due to scheduling conflicts because of his film upcoming film, Horizon: An Amazon Saga. While the film hasn’t received that great of a rating, hard-fought negotiations led to the understanding that it would be better for Costner to leave the show. Interestingly enough, the actor was on board for Yellowstone right after reading the pilot script.

As stated by Variety, Costner was attracted to the dialogue and the way the entire story just rolled off the tongue naturally despite being so different.

Kevin Costner May Come Back to Yellowstone

Kevin Costner recently spoke with GQ about a possible return to Yellowstone. Seeing how captivated he was with the script just by the pilot episode, the departure must have been one that came with a great amount of thinking. Now it would seem that Costner has also had talks with Taylor Sheridan about a comeback for the final few episodes.

Kevin Costner with Kelly Reilly (L) on Yellowstone [Credit Paramount Network]
Kevin Costner with Kelly Reilly (L) on Yellowstone | Credit: Paramount Network

Well, Taylor and I know what the conditions are for coming back, and I’ll just keep that between ourselves, he stated. And if we can’t get to it, it’s because at the end of the day, it’s unreasonable for them or something. He added, I am a person that is very script oriented. And if the scripts aren’t there now, I need to know what I am. I want to make sure that the character lines up with what’s important to me too. And that’s pretty simple. That’s just between, again, Taylor and myself. Can we ever get there? I don’t know.

He stated that although the offer is tempting, there are various conditions that he has to take care of before a possible return. While Costner’s exact words to Sheridan haven’t yet been revealed, the doors have been kept open regardless.

The most important factor for him is the way each script is written. That was something that attracted even the actor. So to see them diverting from those very scripts, that changes things for Costner. So whether or not he may return is purely a game of patience.

Adya Godboley

Written by Adya Godboley

Articles Published: 1541

An avid writer fluent in everything Marvel, Adya Godboley is an Assistant Anime Content Lead for FandomWire. She has rich experience in critically analyzing all that is said in between the lines. Hopelessly obsessed with Greek Mythology, she is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in English. Adya has written over 1400 articles on various topics expressing her passion and love for all things entertainment, from superheroes to anime and the occasional gacha games.