“Yellowstone” star Kevin Costner is used to questioning conventional wisdom. He has ignored it time and again to pursue what he feels are artistically worthy projects. And he has said he always puts the audience on his shoulder, especially when a studio or network executives are telling him something won’t sell.
He had to ignore the conventional wisdom to make “Dances With Wolves.” And he tries to live his life by the same code, Costner said in a 2013 interview with Home Business magazine.
“Yeah, conventional wisdom is so scary because what if everybody’s wrong?” Costner mused. “You know, what if everybody’s wrong in life? And so you have to live your life yourself. And conventional wisdom can get us into so much trouble, especially as artists.”
Kevin Costner ‘Would Hate to See a UFO’
Costner explained that if he saw a UFO, he wouldn’t be able to shake his own gut feeling that he’d seen something extraordinary. Many people would be tempted to pretend they hadn’t seen it for fear of ridicule or other negative consequences. Not Costner.
“I’m not afraid of my own journey,” Costner told Home Business. “You know what I mean? And I can’t turn my back on what it is I think I know. I mean, I would hate to see a UFO. Because it would ruin my life. I would have to talk about it the rest of my life, and everybody in the room would go, ‘Poor Kevin.’”
Costner implied that he’s often suffered the Hollywood equivalent of “poor Kevin” for chasing projects that run against conventional wisdom. And he’s stubborn, too. So if he finds a creative work he likes, he’ll stick with it until it’s made.
“Because you could not turn your back on the idea that you saw it,” he said. “You know what I mean? If you saw one, you would have to do that. So for me, when I read a story that I think has value and I want to be in it, that doesn’t change for me. It doesn’t fall out of favor for me. I might have to move on because the universe is saying you can’t make this right now. But I’m going to circle back and make it.”
Costner Strives for Originality
Moreover, Costner said he’s trying to make movies – or, in the case of “Yellowstone,” which he executive produces as well as stars in, TV shows – that say something original.
“The truth is, I just want do things that are original and throw an original spin on them,” he said. “But I don’t take much stock in other people’s opinions if I think something’s good, I don’t fall out of love with it. If somebody said my wife’s not beautiful, I’d go, she is. I wouldn’t say, really? No, she is. I know she is. In my mind, you know. So, I’ve never had that fear of going against the grain.”
Fortunately for Costner, his instincts have served him pretty well, and they have yielded him an Oscar, a Golden Globe, an Emmy, a BAFTA Award and a net worth of around $250 million.