Kevin Costner reportedly wanted the right to review, approve, and potentially veto every Yellowstone script.
Yellowstone fans were shocked when it was announced several months ago that the current incarnation of the series would be coming to an end as Kevin Costner had decided to depart. However, it wasn’t entirely a done deal, as the actor was still willing to return for the second half of the fifth season and perhaps even more. But according to Puck (via TVLine), Kevin Costner had a number of demands, including the right to review, approve, and potentially veto every Yellowstone script. That obviously didn’t sit well with series co-creator Taylor Sheridan, who has written or co-written every episode.
In addition to veto power over the Yellowstone scripts, Kevin Costner also wanted more money and a reduced shooting schedule. The reduced schedule was to give him enough time to shoot his Western epic, Horizon. It remains to be seen what will happen to Costner’s character in Yellowstone, but if he’s killed off, Costner will still have to approve it. Puck reported that Costner’s Yellowstone contract includes a “moral death” clause that lists all the ways John Dutton can and cannot be killed. I can’t say I’ve heard of that before.
Yellowstone co-creator Taylor Sheridan opened up about the unfortunate drama regarding Kevin Costner’s exit. “My opinion of Kevin as an actor hasn’t altered. His creation of John Dutton is symbolic and powerful … and I’ve never had an issue with Kevin that he and I couldn’t work out on the phone,” Sheridan explained. “But once lawyers get involved, then people don’t get to talk to each other and start saying things that aren’t true and attempt to shift blame based on how the press or public seem to be reacting. He took a lot of this on the chin and I don’t know that anyone deserves it. His movie seems to be a great priority to him and he wants to shift focus. I sure hope [the movie is] worth it — and that it’s a good one.“
Paramount quickly announced a Yellowstone sequel series that would continue the story of the Duttons with Matthew McConaughey tapped to star. While Taylor Sheridan is “disappointed” by the exit of his leading man, he is looking forward to working with Matthew McConaughey. “He seems like a natural fit,” Sheridan said. “We had a few conversations over the years, and spitballed a few ideas. Then he started watching Yellowstone and responded to it. He was like, ‘I want to do that.’ And by ‘that’ he meant diving into a raw world clashing up against the modern world. And then I said, ‘Buddy, that we can do.’“
Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/yellowstone-kevin-costner-script-veto-power/