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It looks like we finally know what's going on with Kevin Costner's future on Yellowstone. The actor appeared in court on September 1 as part of his divorce proceedings from estranged wife Christine Baumgartner, where he reportedly shared a surprise comment about his status on the Paramount Network series.
According to People, Kevin decided to leave the hit drama after learning the final season would be split into two parts. Going into production twice a year caused an issue in his work schedule as he's also working on his four-part film franchise Horizon: An American Saga. Per the outlet, he added that no scripts were ready for season 5 part 2 while filming part 1. What's more, he testified that he would be paid $12 million for each installment, which was significantly less than previous seasons.
“I couldn’t help them anymore," he said about a sixth season, per the publication. "We tried to negotiate, they offered me less money than previous seasons, there were issues with the creative … we came up with a number, and they [Yellowstone] walked away. I’ve been told it’s a little disappointing that [it’s] the #1 show on TV [and] I’m not participating."
The Academy Award winner's comments about his current TV status comes two months after Yellowstone's creator Taylor Sheridan shared his perspective.
While it's been rumored that he and Kevin were feuding over salary and the shooting timeframe for season 5 part 2, Taylor spoke out on the situation in June, giving his opinion on the issue and his feelings toward the actor to The Hollywood Reporter.
"My opinion of Kevin as an actor hasn’t altered," he said at the time. "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. 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."
"I’m disappointed," he concluded. "It truncates the closure of his character. It doesn’t alter it, but it truncates it."
As of right now, the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes are also compromising what will happen to Yellowstone as a whole. But when the series inevitably does return for the final episodes, let's hope John Dutton gets the sendoff he deserves.
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