An Emotional Kevin Costner Recalls Fighting To Cast Whitney Houston In ‘The Bodyguard’ [VIDEO]

February 18, 2012 1:00 pm

Friends and family gathered together to pay their last respects to the legendary Whitney Houston Saturday morning at New Hope Baptist Church. Celebrities in attendance included: Antonio “L.A.” Reid, Ray J, Brandy, Tyler PerryClive DavisAlicia Keys, Steve WonderOprah Winfrey, Bill Cosby, Bobby Brown, and Kevin Costner.

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Costner received a standing ovation after speaking of his experience casting Whitney in the cult-classic film “The Bodyguard” despite studio pushback, scheduling conflicts, and even the singer’s own insecurities.

Costner recalled asking Whitney to be his co-star, but “was reminded that this would be her first acting role. You could also think about another singer, was the suggestion — maybe somebody white. Nobody ever said it out loud, but it was a fair question.” Not to be dissuaded Costner “told everyone that I had taken notice that Whitney was black. The only problem was I thought she was perfect for what we were trying to do.” The leading man went as far as pushing production back a full year to accommodate Whitney’s touring schedule.

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“Whitney, if you could hear me now, I would tell you, you weren’t just good enough, you were great,” he said in closing. “You sang the whole damn song without a band. You made the picture what it was. A lot of leading men could’ve played my part … but you, Whitney, I truely believe you were the only one who could’ve played Rachel Marron at that time. You weren’t just pretty, you were as beautiful as a woman could be. And people didn’t just like you Whitney, they loved you.”