*Racism may be a topic to approach cautiously, but as Kevin Costner found out, it’s also a topic that many in Hollywood won’t touch. Let alone finance.
During a Q&A at the recent National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Convention in Boston, the actor revealed his struggle to get his film “Black and White” made. Despite it not being as grand as many of Hollywood big budget tentpoles, Costner felt “Black and White” was worthy of the same treatment, according to a an article by TheWraps’ Anita Bennett.
“I just thought it was an interesting movie…” he said. “I can’t speak for why [no one would finance it]. I know a lot of people want to make these big, giant movies and I understand … But I thought this movie is just as valid as those movies. So that’s why I made it.”
Starring Costner and Octavia Spencer, “Black and White” centers on attorney Elliot Anderson (Costner) as he raises his biracial granddaughter Eloise with his wife (their daughter died during childbirth). When his wife is killed in a car accident, Elliott is drawn into a custody battle over the little girl, with her African-American grandmother Rowena (Spencer), who believes Eloise should be raised by her drug addicted, biological father.
In addition to starring in “Black and White,” Costner produced the racially charged independent drama under his Treehouse banner, and screened it for about 200 journalists. Despite being a two-time Oscar winner and established actor, Costner admitted that no studio in Hollywood would have anything to do with “Black and White.”
“I said it 50 times that we should make this movie and at the end of the day, I had to pay for it,” said the entertainer, who confessed the Mike Binder-directed film being close to his heart.
In addition to Costner and Spencer, “Black and White” features Anthony Mackie, Jillian Estell, Andre Holland, Bill Burr and Mpho Koaho. Despite content that could be found in other similar Spencer, who appeared at the Q&A with Costner,” stated that a deeper look at the film reveals important topics addressed, such as race in America, child custody issues and the importance of a strong family unit.
“We don’t like to discuss things that might be a little bit unnerving and uncomfortable … and ‘Black and White’ deals with a lot of issues,” she said.
“Black and White” is expected to arrive in theaters later this year. The film’s next screening will be at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.
For more about Kevin Costner’s Q&A at the NABJ convention, including his experience secretly sitting in on a screening of “Black and White” to hear the audience’s reactions, check out Anita Bennet’s fuil story at TheWrap.