Kevin Costner pays tribute to Ray Liotta during Field of Dreams baseball game: 'He's become eternal'
Those watching the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds game on Thursday were hit with a real tearjerker moment.
During the Major Baseball League's Field of Dreams game, Fox and the organization aired a special tribute video to the late Ray Liotta. The touching dedication was narrated by none other than Kevin Costner, Liotta's costar in the movie.
The 1989 film featured the late actor as Shoeless Joe Jackson opposite Costner's character Ray Kinsella. The sentimental footage Fox aired featured scenes of the pair in the beloved drama.
"Field of Dreams is about belief and those rare moments where magic becomes real," Costner said in his voiceover. "And it doesn't work unless Shoeless Joe is worth the wait, unless he's special. And Ray Liotta was special."
The Yellowstone star then singled out a particular onscreen moment between the two, in which he believes the spiritual nature of the story transcended what the script called for.
"When Ray died back in May, I reminisced about how our batting practice moment together was not a stunt," Costner said. "It was real, and it happened as you saw it. I said that God gave us that stunt that night, and now God has Ray."
Costner ended with a heartbreaking send-off, noting how Liotta now lives on through his performance in the classic.
"And though he may be gone, that's the beauty of a game like baseball and a movie like Field of Dreams," he said. "He gets to live forever in our hearts whenever he steps out of that cornfield. He's become eternal. Long live Shoeless Joe, and long live Ray, who helped show us that when dreams come from the heart, they really can come true."
Costner appeared at last year's Field of Dreams game, kicking it off with a hopeful statement about the film's message. "It's perfect," he said. "We've kept our promise. Major League Baseball has kept its promise. The dream is still alive. There's probably just one question to answer: Is this heaven? Yes, it is."
Field of Dreams follows an Iowa farmer who begins hearing a mysterious voice one night delivering the iconic line,"If you build it, he will come." Constructing a baseball field on his land, he is soon visited by the ghosts of great players, who begin playing the game and eventually bring a community together. Based on the book Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella, the film was written and directed by Phil Alden Robinson.
The MLB at Field of Dreams is a recurring game played in a ballpark near the Field of Dreams in Dyersville, Iowa, made popular by the movie.
Liotta died in his sleep at the age of 67 while filming the movie Dangerous Waters in the Dominican Republic.
In the wake of the news, Costner was among the stars who expressed their grief, writing in a post on Instagram, "Devastated to hear the news of @rayliotta's passing. While he leaves an incredible legacy, he'll always be Shoeless Joe Jackson in my heart."
Ahead of Thursday's game, Costner also shared images of him and Liotta in the film.
"In honor of MLB at Field of Dreams this week, I wanted to share some memories from the movie but more importantly remember the amazing Ray Liotta," he captioned the photos. "Shoeless Joe Jackson will be out there with all of us for a great night of baseball in the fields of Iowa."
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