Costner’s dark side

'Mr. Brooks' a serial killer to root for

HOLLYWOOD — The aud at Tuesday’s Chinese Theater preem of “Mr. Brooks” were ready for a drink after seeing Kevin Costner as a quietly scary, bow-tie wearing, Volvo-driving, 12-step program attending serial killer.

Fortunately, drinks were nearby, at the Annex after-party, where exec producer Sam Nazarian (who described his position as “the money guy”) said: “How many actors can give you a serial killer you root for?”

As for the major shift from the sort of characters Costner usually plays, MGM’s Rick Sands said, “He’s comfortable enough with his achievements that he can play the bad guy.”

Party was evenly divided between the Annex’s quiet porch, where Costner spent the evening, and the music-blasted interior, where co-star Demi Moore was in a booth with husband Ashton Kutcher and ex-husband Bruce Willis in a scene of marital and post-marital bliss.

Asked why he’d made the decision to play such a dark character at this juncture in his career, Costner cited the script and said, “The part spoke to me.”

“I’ve never operated out of fear,” said the thesp. “I did two baseball movies back to back. A lot of people thought that wasn’t too smart either.”

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