Kevin Costner: The Story of the Family

Colin Farrell doesn’t have many ‘true friends.’ But Brendan Gleeson is one of them. The Irish actor plays Kevin Costner’s real-life son in the movie, which, according to director Sam Mendes, is “about as real as it gets.” We spoke with Farrell about coming back so late to star in a film — and what he thinks of Kevin Costner.

So did you get the script in time? How long did you wait?

I was up for the role of Kevin Costner’s real-life son from an actor’s point of view at first. But they said they weren’t allowed to shoot it until I had done it. I spent about a year and a half going through the script and looking at pictures of him. I was sitting in my chair, looking at pictures of the Kevin Costner who I knew from my childhood. It was pretty obvious he doesn’t look the same. So I knew that he wouldn’t be the same as the person I’ve seen. But I got the script when they told me about it at the start of the movie. That was about two years ago. I waited until I was a few weeks before shooting was due to start. Then my agent told me they were shooting before I could be in the movie, which was really not fair. So I flew out to London and was there at the start of shooting when they were getting ready for it. Then, as I was doing that, I was finding it hard to read the script. Then my agent came over to me and said, “Just stop what you’re doing and come home.” So I was stuck in London and just went through the whole script and was told the story I told you about, which I couldn’t believe I was reading.

They had to get that story of Kevin Costner’s family background on board at some point. But I knew it before that because I had looked at his bio on Wikipedia.

Is that why you were shooting early in the movie? You wanted to make sure they got it right?

They got it right enough for the movie. The trouble is they got the movie wrong.

Did they ever contact you to say that they got the family wrong?


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