Production designer Ida Random was given the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 26th annual Art Directors Guild Awards, and Kevin Costner gave an emotional speech to honor her. Kevin Costner’s stirring tribute not only caused him to choke up, but many members of the audience as well. As it turns out, Kevin Costner wouldn’t have quite the same career as he does today if Ida Random has never intervened.
In the speech, Kevin Costner details the moment where Random changed his life. According to him, he was a struggling actor trying to get his SAG card in Hollywood for over six years. He ended up eventually running into Ida Random on the set of the 1981 film Frances. Costner was an extra for the film and the casting director Elizabeth Leustig brought Costner up to Ida to see if he would fit in a scene set in an alleyway. Ida sized Costner up and decided that he would fit the scene, leading to him getting to deliver a single line: “Goodnight, Frances.” Costner went on to say this would change his life. Clearly, it did, because Costner would go on to star and direct in many projects, becoming a huge Hollywood star in the process.
She looked at me in a very real way, and I don’t know how else to describe it. I had no idea what I had done or what she was looking for…What she couldn’t have possibly known as I waited for her to speak was how shamefully desperate I was to be seen as an actor.Kevin Costner
Costner’s speech landed extremely well with the audience, and it was a fitting tribute to a legendary art director and production designer. Random Ida has worked on a number of films with a number of incredible directors, including Kevin Costner himself on the film The Postman. She was Oscar-nominated for her work on Rain Man with director Barry Levinson. She has also worked on The Big Chill, Spanglish, The War of the Roses, Fast & Furious, Wyatt Earp, and many more. The Lifetime Achievement award was clearly well deserved.
Though Kevin Costner finally made some headway in Hollywood after working with Random on Frances in 1982, he would go on to become a much bigger star in the late 1980s, when he appeared in movies like The Untouchables, Field of Dreams, and Dances with Wolves in 1990. He would also go on to win some prestigious awards of his own, getting a couple of Oscars for directing Dances with Wolves along with the Best Picture award. Sounds like Ida Random certainly knows talent when she sees it.
Though Kevin Costner finds time for some moving speeches for his friends and Hollywood co-workers, he’s probably staying plenty busy otherwise with his hit TV series Yellowstone. The show finished its fourth season and was recently renewed for a fifth season. It’s hugely popular and has been well received by critics and audiences alike. It’s so popular that it spawned a successful spinoff with more spinoffs on the way. Not only does Costner star in the series, but he’s also on as an executive producer.
It’s safe to say that fans of all of Kevin Costner’s work should be thanking Random Ida along with the actor. It definitely seems like this career-changing moment was important, and it may have brought us great movies, shows, and performances we might not have had otherwise.