Sunday, July 21, 2024

Costner’s “Horizon” A Box Office Bomb, Plays to Red States — and Badly


The top grossing theater for Kevin Costner’s “Horizon” was in St. George, Utah. Number 2 was in San Antonio, Texas. Third highest was in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Not a single theater was in the northeast, or on the East Coast. There was only one in California, and no one’s ever heard of it. That was the Reading Cal Oaks in Murietta, a small town far from Los Angeles, near Temecula.

“Horizon” is a movie no one wanted or asked for, and no one is going to see in theaters. With an $11 million opening four day weekend, its theatrical release going forward is in doubt.

Costner announced the making of a 12 hour, four part series of movies while his TV hit, “Yellowstone,” was booming. He thought he could leverage the “Yellowstone” audience and even leave the show at its height.

But he was wrong. Fans of the show got the message. The show’s ending had to be re-written so there could be a sequel without him. Costner went ahead and made 6 hours of “Horizon” in the meantime. “Yellowstone” fans weren’t interested. They were just angry that the story they’d embraced had been forced to a conclusion.

Now Warner Bros. will have to make a decision to move the “Horizon” project to streaming or cable, or both. A part 2 in theaters seems unlikely at this point. If no one went to part 1, and it had bad reviews, no one will go to part 2 in the heavy August summer. They know it’s coming to MAX eventually anyway.

Costner put up $38 million of his own money to make the “Horizon” series. It was a gamble, and looks like he lost, at least for now. Usually in a situation like this, a movie star would make a lucrative TV deal to star in a series. But wait — Costner already did that. Now what?

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Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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