Kevin Costner does a lot of the heavy lifting in "Draft Day."
The actor plays Sonny Weaver Jr. in the movie, the fictional general manager of the NFL football team the Cleveland Browns. Set on the day of the NFL Draft, "Draft Day" follows Weaver as he tries to secure the No. 1 draft pick while trying to decide on what he's willing to sacrifice for the good of the team.
The film, which hit theaters on Friday, April 11, also stars Jennifer Garner, Tom Welling, Frank Langella, Terry Crews, Denis Leary and Ellen Burstyn.
Costner recently talked to OTRC.com about the film and shared why he wanted to do the movie with director Ivan Reitman, his character and why the movie isn't just about football.
Check out five highlights from Costner's interview below and check out video from his interview above.
1. On why he chose to appear in "Draft Day" ...
"I thought we had a chance to make an American classic and not, you know -- when I was done, I really felt like Ivan had done that," Costner told Rachel Smith, host of the "On The Red Carpet" TV show and OTRC.com, at the film's premiere in Los Angeles.
2. He wasn't going to do the movie unless it was approved by the NFL.
When asked if his involvement in the movie helped several stars decide to appear in the film, Costner replied, "I don't think my name hurts. I don't think it hurt when it came to the NFL, because they don't really endorse movies and I wasn't going to do this movie unless the NFL endorsed it because I wasn't going to make it with fake names and fake teams and fake jerseys."
3. Costner appears in almost all of the scenes in the film and said it was very labor intensive.
"I've lived a career of that, honestly, and yeah it is nice to have days off. That's what they asked Gary Cooper one time, what he looked for in scripts, and he said, 'Days off.' And I thought -- I understand that more than ever," Costner said about working on the film. "I've had movies like that and certainly 'Draft Day' was. And it was very intensive, labor intensive, the dialogue."
"So I think that's one of the reasons it props itself up so nicely, but we did have people come in who want to be a part of a classic movie and I think Ivan Reitman did that," he added.
4. His character, Sonny Weaver Jr., doesn't get off to a good start.
"Well there's definitely an architecture to this character, which is -- it doesn't start off well for him and it doesn't get any better as the day goes on, but there's a moment where things start to begin to change," Costner said. "And what I like ultimately is what you believe is this character didn't have a master plan, what happened is other people started to make mistakes and he started to believe more in himself and it's orchestrated so that you actually cheer for a guy saying another man's name, a young man's name. You just cheer for it."
5. The film is about more than football.
"It couldn't be that [just about football] because otherwise it had been a documentary," Costner said at the premiere. "It was really about drama, about family, about pressure and woven into a really exciting ending."
Additional reporting by George Pennacchio of KABC Television, which produces the nationally syndicated entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).