Best Known For
Film actor and director Kevin Costner directed and starred in the epic film Dances With Wolves (1990), which won seven Oscars.
Kevin Costner discusses considering Marlon Brando for a role in the film, but decided against it because it was his first time directing.
Kevin Costner discusses the surprising box office success of “Dances with Wolves.”
Kevin Costner describes being caught on a runaway horse during filming.
Even though she initially turned down the role, Kevin Costner eventually secured Whitney Houston as his costar in "The Bodyguard." Whitney's accompanying soundtrack became the best-selling soundtrack album of all time.
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Kevin Costner was born on January 18, 1955, in Lynwood, California. After studying at California State University, Costner became an actor, establishing a reputation in the critically acclaimed films Bull Durham (1988) and Field of Dreams (1989). He directed and starred in the epic film Dances With Wolves (1990), which won seven Oscars. In 2012,
Costner won an Emmy Award (best actor in a miniseries) for his performance in the History Channel miniseries Hatfields & McCoys.
Sometimes compared to such screen legends as Gary Cooper and Jimmy Stewart, actor Kevin Costner first came to fame in the 1980s. Born on January 18, 1955, in Lynwood, California, he is the son of a power company employee; his father's job necessitated a number of moves during Costner's youth. In his high school years, Costner struggled with insecurities because of his short stature.
Costner attended California State University in Fullerton, where he studied marketing. During college, he developed an interest in acting. Costner spent years as a struggling performer after graduating from college in 1978. He sometimes worked as a carpenter and also had a behind-the-scenes job as a gofer for Raleigh Studios for a time.
Costner landed a role as a suicide victim in the 1983 ensemble drama The Big Chill with Glenn Close, Kevin Kline, William Hurt, Jeff Goldblum and others. What looked like his first big break ended in disappointment when all of his scenes ended up on the cutting room floor. "I rehearsed for a month with the whole cast and shot for about a week. I knew when I was shooting it that if anything would be cut it would be my scenes," Costner later explained. But the film's director Lawrence Kasdan remembered Costner and later signed him for the 1985 western Silverado. The film, which also starred Kevin Kline, Scott Glenn and Danny Glover, proved to be a springboard to other opportunities in Hollywood.
In 1987, Costner's career really took off with two hit films. He starred with Sean Young in the popular thriller No Way Out and played the legendary crime fighter Eliot Ness in The Untouchables with Sean Connery. Untouchables director Brian De Palma praised Costner's work on the film, saying that "he can take those old Western lawman lines and make them real." Continuing his winning streak, Costner starred in the baseball romantic comedy Bull Durham with Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins the following year.
With 1989's Field of Dreams, Costner again won over audiences with his everyman appeal. He played a farmer who creates a baseball diamond on his land on the instruction of a voice he hears. The fantastical yet heartfelt film did well both critically and commercially. Costner, now an established box office star, got the green light to work on his directorial debut Dances with Wolves (1990). The movie was a labor of love with shooting stretching out over 18 months, 5 of which were spent on location in South Dakota.
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The United Service Organization was founded in 1941, as a way to provide morale to service members through entertainment. Hollywood was happy to promote its patriotism (and its stars), and sent entertainers to combat zones, often in danger, to perform for the troops. From Marilyn Monroe to Stephen Colbert, many of the biggest names in showbiz have put on shows for the American service members around the world. Check out these famous USO entertainers.
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