Kevin Costner invests in Utah for next career move

It's unclear how many people may be employed at the studios funded by Costner, who filmed parts of multimillion-dollar 'Horizon' epic in Utah

Kevin Costner knows best – "If you build it, he will come."

The "Field of Dreams" actor is planting roots in the great American Southwest and building a state-of-the-art film studio in St. George, Utah.

His next major career milestone will see the rise of the Territory Film Studios on the outskirts of town, roughly 30 minutes outside of Zion National Park in southern Utah.

Costner's studios will include multiple structures with the Pine Valley Mountains serving as a backdrop to the new business venture.

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Kevin Costner in epic Horizon and Yellowstone

Kevin Costner is building a film studio in St. George, Utah, where he filmed "Horizon." (Warner Bros./Paramount Pictures / Fox News)

St. George Mayor Michele Randall confirmed with Fox News Digital that Territory Film Studios is hoping to "break ground in the spring or summer," depending on permitting processes.

Once completed, the studios will have 70,000 square feet of sound stages, 51,000 square feet of production warehouses and nearly 32,000 square feet of production offices.

The lot will also include a sit-down restaurant and an on-site catering department.

Joyce Kelly, sales and event manager with the Greater Zion Tourism Office, told FOX Business that Costner's "Horizon" epic inspired his desire to continue easily creating within the community. 

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"He has truly fallen in love with this state because it's so diverse and so beautiful and people," Kelly said. "So, I knew what he was looking for, and I believe I found him the right partner. And so they're going to do a joint venture they called Territory Film Studios."

Kevin Costner Utah film studio

Kevin Costner's new Territory Film Studio in St. George, Utah, will have a restaurant and catering department. (Greater Zion Tourism Office / Fox News)

Kelly added, "We think it's going to be an amazing studio. We think it's an amazing location… Very accessible to LA, Las Vegas and incredible scenery. You know, whether you're filming indoors or outdoors, we think it's going to be an amazing experience for filmmakers worldwide."

Costner filmed part of his upcoming series, "Horizon: An American Saga," in St. George, and in the Moab area, and will return to St. George to continue filming the third and fourth installments, Kelly said.

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She credited the "Yellowstone" actor as "one of the most creative people" she's ever met, and believed that Territory can also provide valuable economic opportunities to the community.

While it's unclear how many people may be employed at the studios, Kelly was excited about expanding industry opportunities for the state.

"Currently we have 4,000 students enrolled in film school and higher education and colleges throughout Utah," she shared.

Kevin Costner as John Dutton

Kevin Costner has played John Dutton on the hit show "Yellowstone" since 2015. (Paramount Network / Fox News)

While still starring on "Yellowstone," Costner announced last year he was finally pursuing his passion project after nearly 30 years on the back burner.  

The four-part epic takes place during the expansion of the American West, both before and after the Civil War, and was recently scheduled for a summer 2024 release. Warner Bros. slated "Horizon: An American Saga Chapter 1" for a June 28, 2024, release, and "Chapter 2" will follow two months later with an Aug. 16, 2024, release.

"Horizon" has come with a hefty price tag, though, and set Costner back more than $20 million in out-of-pocket expenses which came to light in court documents after his ex-wife, Christine Baumgartner, filed for divorce in May after 18 years of marriage.

Baumgartner's legal team explained how Costner expected to receive a "waterfall" of funds from "Horizon" after his initial investments, according to documents obtained by Fox News Digital.

Kevin Costner wears white coat and black bow tie at Oscars after party

Costner revealed during his divorce with Christine Baumgartner that he funded the project with $24 million of his own money. (Daniele Venturelli/WireImage / Getty Images)

"Kevin's total compensation for acting, producing, and directing in Horizon 1 is approximately $12,000,000, and for Horizon 2 is approximately $12,000,000, most of which he voluntarily deferred," docs stated.

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"Kevin estimates that this money will ‘waterfall’ back to him starting in late next year. Kevin also has a profit participation in Horizon 1 and 2, which is yet another source of income."

In addition, Costner mortgaged 10 acres of a $50 million, oceanfront Santa Barbara property to ensure proper funding for the project, Deadline reported.

"I’ve mortgaged 10 acres on the water in Santa Barbara where I was going to build my last house," Costner said. "But I did it without a thought. It has thrown my accountant into a f---ing conniption fit. But it’s my life, and I believe in the idea and the story."

Kevin Costner sports khaki suit and white shirt on talk show

Costner's familiar with fronting funds for his own films, and previously put up money for "Dances with Wolves" and "The Postman." (? / Getty Images)

The first movie in the four-part saga was in post-production in August, a "critical" time of putting things together, Costner said while testifying in his divorce case. 

"I'm here," Costner emphasized while on the stand during a custody dispute with Christine.

While it seems like a major risk for Costner to fund "Horizon" himself, this isn't the first time he's done so.

Costner put up his own money to fund the 1990 movie "Dances with Wolves," "The Postman" in 1997 and "Black or White" in 2014. Out of the three projects, "Dances with Wolves" was the most critically acclaimed, earning Costner two Academy Awards for best director and best picture and a nomination for best actor in a leading role.

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