In new divorce filings, Kevin Costner and his attorneys want the public to know that he wasn’t unfaithful during his 18-year marriage to Christine Baumgartner — in contrast to reports about his first marriage to college sweetheart Cindy Silva, which ended in 1994.
In fact, the final years of Costner’s marriage to Silva were plagued by “increasingly public rumors of his womanizing,” allegations of serial cheating and the movie star developing a reputation for being “a total hound” — who would “almost reflexively come on” to any woman who caught his eye, according to a November 1994 People cover story.
It’s entirely possible that Costner evolved and matured with age, and he was sincere when he talked about not wanting to make the same mistakes with Baumgartner as he did in his first marriage. With regard to marriage no. 2, the 68-year-old actor and director replied “none,” when asked in court records whether he ever engaged any extramarital relationships. His lawyers, though, couldn’t help but throw some shade at Baumgartner, when they said he “does not know for a fact” whether his estranged wife had an affair.
Costner’s statement about marital fidelity comes ahead of a court hearing next week on child support and a trial in November to determine the validity of the couple’s 2004 prenuptial agreement. Baumgartner, who reportedly “blindsided” Costner by filing for divorce May 1, was temporarily awarded $129,755 per month in child support to care for their three children — Cayden, 16, Hayes, 14, and Grace, 13 — in the high-end lifestyle to which they have become accustomed. She also is seeking to challenge the prenup, which she signed ahead of their 2004 wedding. Under the prenup, she can only except to receive a $1 million settlement, while she claims her husband is worth $400 million.
Attorneys for the one-time model and handbag designer have gone to court, demanding that Costner provide information about his business finances. As part of those demands, they asked the actor to provide an accounting of any “expenses paid related to any extramarital romantic relationships,” People reported.
A family law attorney denounced this demand as a “fishing expedition” because any extramarital relationship is not relevant to litigation over the division of property. Marilyn B. Chinitz, a New York-based attorney who is not connected to the case, told People that “the request for ‘expenses paid relating to any extramarital romantic relationships’ should be stricken as irrelevant and harassing.”
But Chinitz also said it’s not “an unusual request” in divorce cases. It’s probably an understandable request given Costner’s personal history, which People outlined in that 1994 cover story.
Kevin Costner and wife Cindy Costner pic.twitter.com/dAFlbtffAV
— Amelia Bee (@cloudsurfer118) June 24, 2023
Costner and Silva were college sweethearts who met at Cal State Fullerton. After they married in 1978, they struggled together to make ends meet as he auditioned for acting roles in movies and TV. By the late 1980s, his star was on the rise and he was becoming known as a movie heartthrob, setting off romantic sparks and doing sex scenes with Sean Young in “No Way Out” and Susan Sarandon in “Bull Durham.”
Meanwhile, Silva was tasked with being the primary caretaker to their three children, People said. Costner often talked in interviews about how being a father “is the most important thing in my life.” Being an upstanding family man was an important part of Costner’s image, People also said.
But the extremely ambitious Costner often was away from home, acting, directing or producing films.
When Costner was shooting the 1990 film, “Robin Hoods: Prince of Thieves,” in the U.K., British tabloids reported on an alleged affair between the actor and a nightclub receptionist, People reported. While Costner called the reports “off the wall,” he had developed the “total hound” reputation. A woman he met on a press junket told People that he came onto her while they were riding in a limousine. “It’s almost like he thought, ‘Hey, I’m getting to be a big star, let’s see what I can do,’” she said.
To an extent, Costner played up the roguish reputation, telling People in 1989 that he probably comes across that way because “I have a real appreciation for women.”
Costner’s marriage derailed and his career suffered a major setback as he filmed the futuristic aqua epic “Waterworld,” which received mixed reviews and struggled to recoup its massive $172 million budget. During the bloated production that became known as “Kevin’s Gate,” Costner had to fend off reports of his alleged dalliance with a 35-year-old hula dancer, People reported. Costner had no comment on the reports at the time.
It’s been widely reported that Costner was devastated financially and emotionally by his divorce from Silva, which cost the actor a record-setting $80 million at the time. Costner and Silva also divorced when they still had young children. Costner talked in interviews about never wanting to to go through another divorce when he still had children at home. An insider told Us Weekly in May that this would be his “worst nightmare.”
But here Costner is, going through another costly divorce. Almost as soon as Baumgartner filed for divorce, Costner’s representative was forced to deny rumors that he cheated. The rep told Page Six in May that any allegations of infidelity are “absolutely not true.”
The cheating rumors no doubt emerged because of Costner’s history. But a longtime friend told Page Six: “There was no issue of cheating at all (in his marriage to Baumgartner).”
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