Kevin Costner’s second Horizon film pulled from theatrical release

The August theatrical release for the second chapter of Kevin Costner’s ambitious Western epic Horizon: An American Saga has been cancelled after the first film fizzled in theatres.

New Line Cinema announced on Wednesday that Horizon: Chapter 2 will not hit theatres on August 16 as scheduled.

The studio had planned an unusually fast back-to-back release for the two Horizon films. But after the first chapter collected a modest 23 million dollars in its first two weeks in theatres, the distributor pivoted.

“Territory Pictures and New Line Cinema have decided not to release Horizon: Chapter 2 on August 16 in order to give audiences a greater opportunity to discover the first instalment of Horizon over the coming weeks,” a spokesperson for New Line said in a statement.

LA Premiere of “Horizon: An American Saga”
Kevin Costner, the director, co-writer and star of Horizon: An American Saga (Chris Pizzello/AP)

No streaming date on Max has yet been announced. The Hollywood Reporter first reported the shift in plans.

The move is a humbling acknowledgement that Costner’s big theatrical gamble for his decades-long passion project has failed to catch on with audiences.

The first chapter of Horizon, which debuted in May at the Cannes Film Festival, cost 100 million dollars to make, making its path to profitability extremely challenging if not impossible.

Costner put some of his own money into it, and has already begun shooting a third instalment of what he envisions will ultimately be four movies.

When asked in May about the movies hitting theatres in quick succession, Costner said: “The studio wanted to try that. I knew this was going to come out fairly quickly, like every four or five months. That may have been easier. But this is something they feel like people can remember the first one and it can tie into the second one.”

Costner, who directed, co-wrote and co-stars in the films, had been trying to make Horizon for more than 30 years.

While releasing the film, Costner confirmed his exit from the hit series Yellowstone. The ultimate destination of Horizon, he acknowledged, was always going to be on TV.

“They’re going to break this up into a hundred pieces, you know what I mean?” said Costner.

“After four of these, they’re going to have 13, 14 hours of film and they’re going to turn into 25 hours of TV, and they’re going to do whatever they’re going to do. That’s just the way we live in our life but they’ll also exist in this form. And that was important for me, to make sure that happened. And I was the one who paid for it.”

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