Nepo Baby of the Week: Kevin Costner’s ‘Beautiful Boy’ Joins Family Business


Kevin Costner knows you’re probably mad that he cast his 15-year-old son, Hayes, in his movie Horizon: An American Saga, but here’s the thing all of the haters and critics are missing: He really, really just wanted to spend more time with his son. And where better to do that than at work?

For many of us, the words “quality time” likely conjure quaint images of baseball games, road trips, and family game nights, but when you’re the booked-and-busy star of such hallowed franchises as Yellowstone, that is simply not feasible. Better to turn your next project into a marathon Take Your Son to Work Day.

Costner explained himself during a recent stop by the Today show, where he grabbed a figurative shovel to deepen the hole he’d already begun digging with this casting decision.

“I selfishly wanted him with me for the week, two weeks, he was with me,” Costner the Very Professional Director said during the appearance. “And we would drive to the set every day and he would whisper.”

Whisper? About what? Also, why was Hayes whispering? Were there other people in the car? Does he have a vocal condition, or is he just shy?

Evidently, Costner could hear these questions coming from a mile away. “He’s a beautiful boy,” he told Today, “and he’s quiet.”

As someone who typically calls her 12-pound dog a “beautiful boy,” I must admit, I find myself wondering how Hayes feels about this branding. If he’s looking to build a career in Hollywood as a Serious Actor, this label surely will not age well. Picture it—will the Young Hollywood pantheon of rising male celebrities would include Timothée Chalamet, Jacob Elordi, Barry Keoghan, and Hayes “Beautiful Boy” Costner? I’m just not sure I see it!

In Horizon, Hayes plays Nathaniel Kittredge—the son of Civil War-era settlers. Yes, Costner knows people are going to gripe about how his son “didn’t have a lot of experience,” but he’s doubling down on the branding. As he told Today, his teenage son is “really beautiful in the movie.” No more questions here!

Looking back, we should have seen this coming. After all, Costner has been one of Hollywood’s most prolific Nepo Daddies for years.

Costner’s first child, his daughter Annie, appeared alongside him in Dances with Wolves as a child, and after a few more roles, the 40-year-old has transitioned to producing. His second child, Lily, appeared in The Baby-Sitters Club and The Postman—the latter of which her father just happened to direct—and, in the grand tradition of nepo babies, is also a singer who’s contributed music to more than one of her dad’s projects. Nepo Baby No. 3, Joe Costner, also appeared in The Postman, but even before that, he appeared in the Costner vehicle The Tin Cup.

Costner’s fourth child, Liam, seems to be the first to break with tradition. According to People, he “generally stays out of the spotlight.” Good for him! Meanwhile, Costner seemed excited that his next son, Cayden Wyatt, was interested in music, but it seems that the 17-year-old has yet to capitalize on his dad’s fame. (Time’s a-tickin’, Cayden—hop to it!) Next up is Hayes, whom we now all know, and finally, there’s 14-year-old Grace, who at this point is due for her close-up any day now.

But don’t ever accuse Kevin Costner of trying to foist a Hollywood dynasty on us! on Today, convincingly insisted, “I have not shoved my children into the business.” Case closed, I guess?

But wait—how, then, did Hayes appear in his film with absolutely no experience? Said Daddy Costner, come off it!

“I realize there’s so many young actors that would just kill to be in this movie, and I don’t want to take those parts away from them just ’cause I can place my own children in,” Costner said. “But in this instance, it was a smaller part.”

As we all know, no one ever tries to break into Hollywood through small parts—only the big ones.

Check out our past Nepo Babies of the Week.

This post was originally published on Daily Beast

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