Kevin Costner has hinted that he is prepared to file a lawsuit following his departure from the smash series Yellowstone.
The enormously successful programme, which stars the actor as Montana ranch owner John Dutton, was announced in May that it will be ending with its fifth and final season this year.
The announcement came after allegations that Costner, 68, had disagreements with creator Taylor Sheridan over schedule concerns, but few additional specifics concerning his departure had been published.
While Sheridan previously stated that he was ‘disappointed’ with Costner’s choice to leave the show, the actor has just recently spoken out about what transpired, and he hasn’t held back.
Costner discussed leaving the programme during a recent court hearing for his divorce proceedings with estranged wife Christine Baumgartner.
During his testimony, Costner disclosed that he had previously promised to film seasons five, six, and seven of the Western series for a cost of $12 million (£9.5 million).
When the fifth season was broken into two parts, Costner altered his schedule to accommodate filming the second half, even shifting the filming of his picture Horizon to meet it, resulting in a $10 million ‘push charge’ that was absorbed by his film’s budget.
The screenplay for the second half of the season had not yet been written by the time Costner was ready to film Yellowstone again.
He claimed in court that discussions for season six continued in February and again in May due to money and ‘creative issues,’ and that Paramount finally backed out when he demanded $12 million to film that season.
‘It’s a little disappointing that the number one show on television is not producing,’ he said, as reported by the Daily Mail.
‘I’ll probably go to court over it. I’m disappointed in the production.’
The continuing Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA strikes have put the final episodes of the programme on indefinite pause.
According to Deadline in February, Costner only intended to shoot his sequences for the second set of episodes in season five for one week.
His attorney, however, rejected the story, calling the notion that his client was only willing to work one week on the second half of season five of Yellowstone a “absolute lie.”
Yellowstone season five will return to Paramount Plus in November.