Kevin Costner in a Western costume in Horizon: An American Saga

The First Trailer for Kevin Costner’s Multi-Part Epic Western Film Has Arrived

The official trailer for Kevin Costner‘s multi-part Horizon: An American Saga has arrived, giving viewers their first glimpse at the epic Western.

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Viewers are bound to be curious about the film, which Costner directed, starred in, co-wrote, and personally financed. It is also part of the reason why he departed from Yellowstone. This is no ordinary passion project, though, as Costner spent a staggering 35 years trying to make it a reality. He tried to make the project into a single movie in 1988 and again in 2003. Despite the huge success of his film Dance with Wolves, studios oddly passed on funding Horizon: An American Saga.

During the decades in which the project stagnated, he began expanding the story, eventually building it up into a four-part film series. Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema eventually joined the production, but Costner still reportedly mortgaged his home to help fund the $100 million combined budget of Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 and Chapter 2. To get a better idea of the scope of the project, Costner revealed he planned to fill roughly 170 speaking roles across all four films. Now, viewers finally have their first look at the filmmaker’s biggest and most ambitious project yet.

Warner Bros. drops the first trailer for Horizon: An American Saga

Warner Bros. dropped the trailer for Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 on February 26. Meanwhile, the studio has confirmed the first part will arrive in theaters on June 28, 2024. Part 2 is set to follow close on the heels of Part 1 with a release date of August 16, 2024.

The trailer doesn’t give many specific details about the plot, but it does tease the star-studded cast and scale of the project. Viewers see Americans migrating to the West via horse and wagon, with the indigenous populations looking on. Settling in the West is no easy journey as viewers see a harrowing attack on one family and hear warnings that everything these people build will be burned down. However, there are also teases of romance and action as Costner’s character is seen with a romantic interest and later takes out multiple assailants with his pistol. The blend of drama, action, and romance, large ensemble cast, and gorgeous shots of the sprawling landscape tease the large scale of the movie.

Costner, of course, is the film’s leading man. According to Variety, he portrays a character named Hayes Ellison. So far, his role is the only one that has been disclosed. However, in the trailer, Costner refers to Abbey Lee’s character as “Mary,” and she appears to be his love interest. Sienna Miller’s character is also featured prominently, as her family is seen under attack. Costner’s son, Hayes Costner, is also seen in the trailer during the attack scene. He is spotted ushering the women in the family to safety before heading off against his mother’s wishes to fight alongside his father.

Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 has also cast the following actors in undisclosed roles: Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Michael Rooker, Michael Angarano, Jamie Campbell Bower, Thomas Haden Church, Luke Wilson, Danny Huston, Isabelle Fuhrman, Will Patton, Tatanka Means, Dale Dickey, Kathleen Quinlan, Jeff Fahey, and Giovanni Ribisi.

The official synopsis for Horizon: An American Saga reads:

In the great tradition of Warner Bros. Pictures’ iconic Westerns, “Horizon: An American Saga” explores the lure of the Old West and how it was won—and lost—through the blood, sweat and tears of many. Spanning the four years of the Civil War, from 1861 to 1865, Costner’s ambitious cinematic adventure will take audiences on an emotional journey across a country at war with itself, experienced through the lens of families, friends and foes all attempting to discover what it truly means to be the United States of America.

In total, the four-part series will cover a span of 15 years and have a runtime of 11 hours, meaning each movie will cover roughly 3-4 years and could be close to three hours long. Given each movie’s time spans and potential long runtimes, it’s understandable why the plot description is fairly general. It appears the film plans to tackle multiple storylines, character arcs, and historical events. While it’s not a true story, its setting has viewers anticipating it will draw from real-life events from the time period. Ultimately, viewers can definitely see the passion and scope of Horizon: An American Saga, but it remains to be seen if Costner can truly pull off such a grand vision.

(Featured image: Warner Bros.)


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Rachel Ulatowski is an SEO writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, YA literature, celebrity news, and coming-of-age films. She has over two years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.