We’ve all done things we regret. But where we differ from Kevin Costner (just one of many ways) is that there wasn’t a camera there in our case. It turns out that Costner dislikes his first-ever movie so much that he, at one stage, tried to scrub it from existence. An extreme approach, for sure.
Malibu Hot Summer – also known by the truly hilarious name Sizzle Beach, USA – starred Kevin Costner as a stable owner who formed a romance with one of the women renting a California beach house. It was filmed in the late ’70s but never saw the light of day until 1986 – by which time Costner was ready to release some of his best movies.
According to the New York Daily News, Costner tried to buy the rights to Malibu Hot Summer while he was preparing to shoot one of his best thriller movies, The Untouchables. The paper reported that he “hoped to host a barbecue where he’d burn its negative.” Brutal.
This didn’t happen, with shlock specialist distributors Troma Entertainment hanging on to the rights. Much of Costner’s fury came about because Malibu Hot Summer producer Eric Louzil wanted to use footage of a Costner sex scene in one of his new movies, called Silent Fury. Costner wasn’t comfortable about the scene when it was first filmed, so he definitely wasn’t happy a decade later.
Troma, very fairly, refused to license the footage for Silent Fury and, as far as we can tell, that movie has never seen the light of day. But in that Daily News report, Louzil was defiant. “The scene will be in my movie,” he said. “I have other footage that was not used in the final cut.”
Having watched the clip above, we can understand why Costner wanted to hide Malibu Hot Summer as much as possible. He now has sublime gravitas as one of Hollywood’s best actors and the anchor point of the Yellowstone cast but, in the late ’70s, it’s fair to say that he wasn’t quite as polished. Certainly, he looks better with a cowboy hat on his head now than he did back then.
In interviews about his early career, Costner has often omitted Malibu Hot Summer and jumped straight to his “first role as a SAG [member]” in the 1982 comedy Night Shift, which was directed by Ron Howard. In that movie, Costner played the less-than-hefty role of Frat Boy #1.
But, despite Costner’s best efforts, Malibu Hot Summer is still out there and you can rent it on Amazon. Based on the clip we’ve just watched though, we’d recommend you choose basically anything else instead. You have plenty of the best Westerns ever to choose from for a Costner fix!
For more Costner, turn your eyes towards our Yellowstone season 5 part 2 guide and find out what happens if Taylor Sheridan can’t bring Kevin Costner back for the finale. Alternatively, learn why Costner despises most Westerns and, finally, we’ve got everything you need to know about his newest film as the Horizon release date draws nearer.