'Life's taken a bite out of me.' Kevin Costner is 'bruised' after $400 million divorce saga.

Most divorces are messy, but Kevin Costner and his ex-wife Christine Baumgartner's divorce was on a whole other level.

Between a dog bed, swivel chair and Baumgartner allegedly refusing to move out of the marital home, there were more than enough bizarre sticking points to get headlines churning. 

While the couple had a seemingly happy 19-year marriage, after tying the knot in September 2004, it all came to a screeching halt when Christine filed for divorce in May 2023, citing irreconcilable differences. 

Both Costner and Baumgartner kept relatively quiet throughout the proceedings, despite the chatter online about their split. 

The pair finally settled their separation in September 2023, with Costner asked to pay US $63,000 (AUD $94,470) to Baumgartner in monthly child support payments, a far cry shy of the US $175,057 (AUD $262,503) she had requested, per USA Today.

Costner’s net worth is expected to be around the $400 million dollar mark, per Baumgartner's lawyer.

Now, Costner has finally spoken out about the experience, telling GQ, that the split was "very serious stuff". 

Image: Getty


"And those things are very important. I have to deal with them," he told the outlet. "And I have to deal with them on a daily basis, emotionally, historically almost.

"I’ve taken big bites out of life, life’s taken big ones out of me, right? I’m not going to lose myself because I’ve been bruised. I have been, but I’m not going to lose myself."

Costner added that he's now focusing on his 'white whale', a film called Horizon, which is currently debuting at Cannes. 

"We are now after the white whale, okay? So I can’t let go of this rope no matter how much my heart’s on the ground, no matter how broken I may be on a daily basis, I can’t let go of this rope because if I do, this thing called Horizon will stop," he said. "Horizon’s not more important than the other things in my life, but I do have a level of responsibility to those guys that invested with me."


Costner said he has sunk as much as USD $38 million (AUD $56 million) in the film. 

How did Kevin Costner and Christine Baumgartner's divorce play out?

In 2023, Christine filed for divorce citing irreconcilable differences after nearly two decades of marriage. Kevin and Christine share sons Cayden Wyatt and Hayes Logan, and a daughter Grace Avery. Costner is also the father to four older children from previous relationships. 

Per court documents obtained by People, the couple have been separated since April 2023. During their divorce, the exes made headlines after it was reported that Kevin complained that Christine hadn't moved out yet. 

Costner said that there was a clause in their prenuptial agreement that stipulated she had 30 days to leave the house after filing for divorce. 

Then in court documents obtained by Daily Mail, the divorce became pettier than ever. In an email, Christine had to request permission to remove pots and pans, a dog bed, a beach umbrella, two swivel chairs, a juicer and an exercise bike from the Santa Barbara home. 

In the email, Christine offered to photograph the items she wanted to take.


The email prompted Costner’s lawyer Jacqueline Misho to respond to Christine's requests with, "It is not a good idea to bite the hand that feeds," the email read. 

Christine was apparently told that if she wished to remove any items from the house, she would need to apply in writing first. However, the Yellowstone actor did permit her to remove her toiletries, handbags, clothing, jewellery and "some Christmas decorations" without his permission. 

A source told the news website, "You have a star worth many millions arguing with his wife about whether she can take a salad spinner from the kitchen without agreement in writing," they said. "It’s petty beyond belief."

Hey now! Listen to this episode of The Spill about the latest celeb divorces. Post continues after podcast.

In another email leaked by the Daily Mail, Costner accused his ex of spending her child support money on plastic surgery and withdrawing cash on credit cards that belonged to their staff.

In response to Costner's claims, the handbag designer accused him of not sufficiently financially supporting the couple’s three children. Christine has previously requested a monthly payment nearly $200,000 dollars, which the actor referred to as "astonishing".

According to Page Six, Costner alleges that his forensic accountant found that his ex spends more than $100,000 in cosmetic surgery procedures which is why her child support request was so high. 


Christine's lawyer argued in a letter that the Oscar-winner could afford the child support. "Although we have not done formal discovery, we believe that Mr Costner’s net worth is in excess of $400 million and his recent reported income is in excess of $19 million a year." 

Regarding Costner's behaviour, an industry insider said that "Kevin has long had a reputation for being a tough negotiator in his professional life," they said. 

"It’s raising eyebrows that it appears he has the same approach in his personal life, too."

Part of the negotiations has been Costner's 'ironclad prenup' with Baumgartner, which was allegedly put in place due to the actor's experience with his first marriage breakdown. 

His first wife Cindy Silver was rewarded US $80 million (AUD $119 million) back in 1994, which is considered one of Hollywood's most expensive divorces per Forbes

This story was originally published on July 24, 2023, and has since been updated with new information.

Feature image: Getty. 

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