Kevin Costner's 'Horizon' sequel pulled from August release

One of the most ambitious rollouts in recent Hollywood memory has already hit a roadblock as Kevin Costner’s “Horizon: An American Saga — Chapter 2” has been pulled from its planned August 16 release date.

The film was meant to follow the June 28 release of “Horizon: An American Saga — Chapter 1.” Costner has spoken of two more chapters that have yet to be made. In two weeks of release, the first film, with an estimated cost of $100 million and a running time of 3 hours and 1 minute, has brought in just $24.5 million. Costner, who directed, co-wrote, produced and stars in “Horizon,” is reported to have invested some $38 million of his own money into the project.

A statement from a New Line Cinema spokesperson read, “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 installment of ‘Horizon’ over the coming weeks, including on PVOD and Max. We thank our exhibition partners for their continued support as moviegoers across the US discover the film in its theatrical run.”

The first installment of “Horizon” will hit premium video on demand services on July 16, while continuing to play in theaters. Its date to launch on the Max streaming service has not yet been announced.

A separate statement from Territory Pictures read, “The audience response to ‘Horizon,’ and enthusiasm for seeing our story continue in ‘Horizon 2,’ has been incredibly gratifying. Kevin made this film for people who love movies and who wanted to go on a journey. The support that we have received from film fans and the theater owners, as they experience the first chapter of this saga, only serves to reinforce our belief in them and the films that we have made, and we thank them for coming on board for the ride. We welcome the opportunity for that window to be expanded as we know it will only serve to enhance the experience of seeing ‘Horizon 2.’”

The news of the change in the release date for “Chapter 2” was first reported by The Hollywood Reporter.

The “Horizon” saga is set on the frontier of the American West during the Civil War. The first film establishes numerous storylines and many characters, played by a cast that, alongside Costner, includes Sienna Miller, Sam Worthington, Jena Malone, Luke Wilson, Isabelle Fuhrman, Tatanka Means, Ella Hunt, Abbey Lee and Danny Huston.

“Chapter 1” ends with what is essentially a trailer for “Chapter 2,” implying that all the storytelling groundwork of the first film will begin to pay off in the second. But when audiences will get to find out if that is indeed the case is, for now, unknown.

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