A Kevin Costner Favorite Is Coming To Netflix

Kevin Costner's The Bodyguard is coming to Netflix, so it's a great time to revisit the film.

By Matthew Creith | Published

As the fifth season of Yellowstone approaches next month, series star Kevin Costner has made it known how powerful of an actor he’s been for the past 40 years of an incredible career on television and in film. One of his early 1990s portrayals in The Bodyguard alongside singer Whitney Houston might be one of the actor’s finest roles, amounting to an incredible box office success and soundtrack that broke records across the board. Now, it appears that The Bodyguard will be coming to Netflix starting November 1st, and it might just be time for audiences to review what made the movie so successful in the first place.

The Bodyguard debuted in theaters on November 25, 1992 and was written by Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan, famous for taking fans on a journey through multiple films like Body Heat, The Big Chill, The Accidental Tourist, and entries in the original Star Wars trilogy. Starring Kevin Costner as former Secret Service agent Frank Farmer, he is tasked with protecting actor and singer Rachel Marron (Whitney Houston), as she has been threatened by an unknown stalker multiple times, including bombs exploding in her dressing room and threatening letters sent to her house. Rachel and Frank initially detest one another, however their respect and love grow as the movie progresses, leading Frank to help investigate who her stalker might be.

Originally touted as a romantic drama between the established movie star Kevin Costner and the well-known singer Whitney Houston in her acting debut, The Bodyguard developed a wider audience as it premiered due in large part because of the thriller aspects of the plot, as well as the soundtrack, mostly sung by Houston. The movie went on to gross a staggering $411 million at the box office against a budget of $25 million, which made it the second highest-grossing movie of that year, just behind the animated Disney feature film Aladdin. Directed by Mick Jackson of L.A. Story and Volcano fame, The Bodyguard also starred Gary Kemp, Bill Cobbs, Ralph Waite, and DeVaughn Nixon.

kevin costner, whitney houston, the bodyguard
Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston in The Bodyguard

While the film was a financial success for its distributor Warner Bros. Pictures, The Bodyguard had critics and audiences split in their reception to the movie. Rotten Tomatoes currently ranks the film with a 35% on its Tomatometer based on 48 critics’ reviews, as well as a slightly better Audience Score of 64% based on over 250,000 ratings from verified users to the site. The film’s lack of critical acclaim led to seven nominations from the infamous Golden Raspberry Awards, which tends to recognize the worst that the film industry offers in a given year, and although The Bodyguard did not take home any prizes that year, Kevin Costner was nominated for Worst Actor while Whitney Houston was nominated for Worst Actress and Worst New Star.

Even though the Razzie Awards came calling for Kevin Costner and the crew of The Bodyguard, it seems that no one could argue with how successful the movie’s soundtrack was for Whitney Houston and the recording industry in general. Houston took home the Grammy Award for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance, both for the song “I Will Always Love You,” a love ballad originally recorded in 1973 by Dolly Parton. With its introduction at the end of The Bodyguard, as well as its often-played music video on MTV, “I Will Always Love You” cemented Houston’s legacy as her signature song and it ended up becoming the best-selling single of all time by a female solo artist.

The legacy of The Bodyguard helped to shape the careers of both Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston in the years after it was initially released, with Houston becoming a superstar in music and film that would see her on the big screen in other films like Waiting to Exhale, The Preacher’s Wife, and the 1997 live-action film Cinderella. Costner had thoughts of making a sequel of The Bodyguard at one time that would star his longtime friend Princess Diana, but that idea was scrapped after she passed away in 1997. Whitney Houston passed away in 2012 and Costner ended up giving a eulogy at her funeral, a sign of how close the two remained following The Bodyguard’s debut in theaters.