The future of Western drama Yellowstone is now uncertain as Kevin Costner, who portrays the Dutton family’s patriarch, will reportedly leave the series following the season 5 finale.
Yellowstone insiders have told Entertainment Weekly that Costner will not be reprising his role in Yellowstone beyond season 5, and suggest that the decision was caused by conflicts between the star and the show’s co-creator, Taylor Sheridan, regarding his filming schedule.
Yellowstone‘s fifth season has already premiered its first half, with fans eagerly anticipating the promised second half of the show, which was initially slated to air this summer.
However, the release date for the remaining episodes is still uncertain, and there’s no clear indication of when the cast and crew will return to Montana to complete filming.
The update of Costner’s status on Yellowstone comes nearly two months after it was first reported that the show could be ending earlier than anticipated due to disputes over the Hollywood actor’s filming commitments.
There had been rumours circulating that Costner was only available for one week of filming for the second part of the season, but his lawyer has since denied these claims.
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At the time, a spokesperson for Paramount Network stated that there was “no news to report” regarding Yellowstone‘s behind-the-scenes drama, but emphasised Costner’s importance to the show, saying that “he is a big part of Yellowstone and we hope that’s the case for a long time to come.”
Despite Kevin Costner’s reported exit from Yellowstone, Paramount is not giving up on the franchise and has several spinoff series in the works.
The network plans to continue with 1923, a spinoff centred around the 6666 Ranch, and another untitled series in the Yellowstone universe led by Matthew McConaughey.
The Yellowstone controversy isn’t the only issue currently plaguing Costner’s life either.
Earlier this week it was announced that the actor’s wife of almost two decades, Christine Baumgartner, had filed for a divorce.
“It is with great sadness that circumstances beyond his control have transpired which have resulted in Mr Costner having to participate in a dissolution of marriage action,” Costner’s representative said in a statement.
“We ask that his, Christine’s, and their children’s privacy be respected as they navigate this difficult time.”
The 68-year-old actor and the 49-year-old former model started their romantic journey in 1998 before tying the knot in a stunning wedding ceremony at Costner’s Colorado ranch in 2004.
Together, they have three children – a 12-year-old daughter and two sons aged 14 and 15.