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Matthew McConaughey Learns of Sam Shepard’s Death on Red Carpet: ‘We Lost One of the Great Ones’

Matthew McConaughey learned of his former costar Sam Shepard’s death on the red carpet for his film The Dark Tower on Monday, July 31, and his reaction is heartbreaking. 

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The 47-year-old actor worked with Shepard on their 2012 thriller Mud. “Today is a sad day with the passing of Sam Shepard,” an Associated Press reporter told McConaughey. “You guys worked together…”

McConaughey interrupted and looked shocked. “What? Sam Shepard moved on?” he said while pressing his hands against his forehead. “Gosh, da–it.”

Matthew McConaughey
Matthew McConaughey

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The Dallas Buyers Club actor went on to speak about Shepard’s work in Mud. “Look, I’m not going to trivialize that situation. I just heard about it for the first time,” he said. “I always told [director] Jeff Nichols this, I said, ‘Look in Mud, the whole trailer for Mud could be Sam Shepard sitting in that green chair telling the boy about who Mud is.’ It would be about a two-and-a-half-minute trailer, but it would have been really badass.”

Matthew McConaughey and Sam Shepard
Matthew McConaughey and Sam Shepard Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Snowlodge; Nancy Rivera/

He still seemed in disbelief and added, “He moved on today? We lost one of the great ones — great writer, great mind. Alright, see you in the next one, Sam.”

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As previously reported, Shepard family spokesperson Chris Boneau announced on Monday that the playwright passed away on Thursday, July 27, due to complications from ALS. He was 73. He died peacefully in his Kentucky home surrounded by his children, Jesse, Hannah and Walker, and his sisters, Sandy and Roxanne Rogers.

“The family requests privacy at this difficult time,” Boneau told Us Weekly.

Shepard shared son Jesse, 47, with ex-wife O-Lan Jones, and daughter Hannah, 31, and son Walker, 30, with Jessica Lange, his partner for nearly 30 years until they split in 2009. 

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