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Kevin Costner: Remembering his time with Whitney Houston

Kevin Costner: Remembering his time with Whitney Houston

In a podcast, Kevin Costner looked back on his time with Whitney Houston on “Bodyguard” and afterwards.

32 years after the success of “Bodyguard,” Kevin Costner (69) remembered his film partner Whitney Houston (1963-2012) with touching words. In the podcast “Armchair Expert,” he revealed the promise he once made to the singer – and why his eulogy at her funeral was so long.

In conversation with Dax Shepard (49) and Monica Padman (36), the Hollywood star looked back on his time with Houston. She was only 29 years old when the film was released in November 1992. The romantic drama – in which Houston plays a famous singer who is pursued by a stalker and falls in love with her bodyguard played by Costner – received mixed reviews, but was a huge box office success, grossing $410 million worldwide.

“She was my choice”

The fact that Houston, who had never acted before, was on board for “Bodyguard” was thanks to Costner: Director Mick Johnson felt “uncomfortable” with Houston in the lead role, but he himself insisted on her film debut. “She was my choice,” emphasized the two-time Oscar winner. “I was the actor, I produced the film and I chose her.” Because she reminded him of his idol Diana Ross (80). “So I knew she was the right one.” He “loved” her, and that’s why the attraction felt in the film was “no big mystery.”

Costner said that Houston “trusted” him like no one else on the production, and he became a sort of “imaginary bodyguard” for her on set. “I started guiding her, and I wasn’t trying to push my director away, but I had made her a promise. I had promised Whitney that she would be good in it… We had this movie that worked, and that was my promise to her. She will always love me in the song, and I will always keep my promise to her.”

The “Bodyguard” music also brought Houston great success

The film received two Oscar nominations – both for Best Original Song – and became an international box office hit. Even more successful than the film was the soundtrack to “Bodyguard”, for which Whitney Houston co-produced six new songs. Her cover of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” remains one of the best-selling singles of all time. It went platinum 18 times and earned the artist the Grammy Awards for Album of the Year and Record of the Year in 1994. The album was later named the best-selling soundtrack album of the century by the Recording Industry Association of America.

The bond between the “Bodyguard” stars remained intact over the years – and it was so close that the actor was allowed to give a eulogy at her public memorial service in February 2012. He was one of eight speakers, and he received a lot of praise for his moving words. At first he didn’t want to speak at all, but then accepted the invitation at the urging of Houston’s aunt Dionne Warwick (83). “I just said yes. I could feel the weight on her, now it had passed on to me. What can I say about this little girl? And [dann] I went back to the church in Newark and it was packed,” he recalled. “It was electric. There were two bands playing, the church was alive. It was like a boom!”

Costner admitted he didn’t feel qualified to give the speech, joking that he saw presenters Oprah Winfrey (70) and Diane Sawyer (78) in the crowd and wanted to ask them if they could take over for him. “I was working on this speech … and I tried to put together everything I wanted to say and finally formulated this speech. Someone said, ‘CNN is here, they wouldn’t mind if you kept your remarks shorter because they’re going to have commercials.’ And I said, ‘They can overlook that. They can play the commercial while I’m speaking, I don’t care.'” Then he started “and about 17 minutes later I was finished.” He felt he had said everything he “needed to say” in that time.

Source: Stern

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