Matthew McConaughey learned on the red carpet that costar Sam Shepard passed

New York premiere of 'The Dark Tower' - Arrivals
You would think with his laid-back demeanor, it would take a lot to rattle Matthew McConaughey, but he was visibly shaken when faced with bad news on the red carpet.

The 47-year-old actor was approached by a reporter from the Associated Press at the red carpet premiere of his latest film The Dark Tower in Los Angeles on Tuesday night. When the reporter asked for a response about the recent passing of actor and playwright Sam Shepard, a shocked Matthew asked, “Sam Shepard moved on? Gosh…dammit…from what?” The reporter didn’t know (surprising for someone from the AP), but pressed Matthew for a response. To his credit, Matthew didn’t get mad, but managed to share his feelings, telling the reporter, “I’m not going to trivialize that situation, I just heard about it for the first time.”

Matthew, who worked with Sam on the film Mud, went on to say, “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.” He also declared that “we lost one of the good ones” and ended his emotional statement with “Alright, see you in the next one, Sam.” Does anyone else think the reporter pulled a dick move by asking Matthew that question? He did handle it quite gracefully though, so you’ve got to hand it to him.

If that wasn’t bad enough news for Matthew to process, he’s probably not too pleased to know that The Dark Tower, the long-awaited big screen adaptation of the Stephen King novel, is getting pretty terrible reviews. It’s currently sitting at 20% on Rotten Tomatoes.

On a lighter note, Matthew and his Dark Tower co-star (and beautiful human being) Idris Elba answered fan questions for Wired magazine. Among the things we learn from the questions, which Idris calls “bizarre,” are that Matthew loves tuna salad (this does not surprise me in the least) and that Idris is a part-time DJ. Matthew also shares the origin of his catchphrase “alright, alright, alright” (which any good fan knows comes from his debut film, Dazed and Confused) and calls Idris “Idris Elbow.” Oh, and he does get free cars from Lincoln.

And, in other “Matthew McConaughey will call you anything he damn well pleases” news, Busy Phillips, who was filling in for Kelly Ripa on Live with Kelly and Ryan this week, shared a story about the time she met Matthew at a pre-Oscar party with her BFF Michelle Williams and Heath Ledger. Busy posted the story and a photo on Instagram on Tuesday after the show. She says she didn’t tell the story during the interview, because, as she hilariously put it, “when you’re hosting, you know, ITS NOT ALL ABOUT YOU.” She goes on to regale:

Years ago, at a pre-oscar party when Heath and Michelle were both nominated for Brokeback, Matthew McConaughey came up to congratulate them and we were introduced- he talked with us for about 10 mins and when he left he said, “Heath, Michelle, congratulations and best of luck to you this weekend. Marc, it was nice to meet you. WHIMSY, it was a pleasure!” We obviously didn’t correct him cause who cares?!- he’s Matthew McConaughey! He can call me whatever he wants! But we all just about died. And Michelle to this DAY sometimes calls me Whimsy. And it always makes us laugh. 😂😂 Also. He’s so hot.

A post shared by Busy Philipps (@busyphilipps) on

Well, it’s too bad that The Dark Tower is a turkey, but it’s giving us lots of fun McConaughey stories, and any excuse to put my eyeballs on Idris Elba is a good thing.

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New York premiere of 'The Dark Tower' - Arrivals

Matthew McConaughey signs autographs for fans as he leaves a Dark Tower press junket

Matthew McConaughey seen arriving at the ABC studios

Photos: Getty Images,

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27 Responses to “Matthew McConaughey learned on the red carpet that costar Sam Shepard passed”

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  1. Jenn says:

    That really sucks for him.

  2. Shijel says:

    Shame about the Dark Tower. I was mildly excited for it myself but I’ve a few friends who’ve been hyped about this ever since it got announced. Eh.

    • V4Real says:

      I’m still going to see it. I have enjoyed movies critics disliked. And Matt and Idris on the same screen, I just can’t.

      Sad about Sam. What an awesome talent. And I don’t think the reporter was out of line.

      • Jerusha says:

        I went to see Blade Runner the week it opened and loved it despite the many bad reviews it received. Also, Alien was slammed on first release. Now they’re considered two of the greatest sci-fi films ever.

  3. slowsnow says:

    That was a sad video. Knowing the passing of someone like that and have to process it while being interviewed.
    Also, I love that McConaughey has such a strong accent and doesn’t hide it. He is so peculiar, I can’t really undertsand what it is about him that makes him so different. On the surface he reacts like a manly man, not shedding a tear and celebrating the man but at the same time he is so… help me out? Raw? I dunno. I guess it’s a cultural thing and you have a lot of these in America but I find him a very unplaceable specimen.

    • Celebitchy says:

      That was deep thanks for this comment. Corey wrote this but I have loved covering McConaughey in the past because he has such a unique personality and perspective. He tells entertaining stories and has an unexpected way of looking at things. I don’t know where you’re from but he’s rare here in the US too.

      • slowsnow says:

        I am honoured that you replied to my comment, Celebitchy. Glad to know he is one of a kind. It was a deeply moving video. McConaughey is obviously not perfect but he gives me hope that original folks can be successful and still let their freak flags fly. Also: amazing actor.

      • Tiffany says:

        One of my favorite stories from him is one about his Dad he told on SNL years ago. As a teen he refused to cut his after after his asked him to. So they were driving and talking about it and Matthew when on this tirade about how Jesus was a hippie and had long hair. So his Dad pulled over the car and told him to get out and Matt asked why and his Dad said, ‘Because Jesus walked’. The delivery was fantastic.

      • Carrie says:

        I love Sandra Bullock’s story about MM playing bongo drums nude while smoking weed. I enjoy him too.

    • smcollins says:

      He’s definitely one-of-a-kind. He’s just Matthew, doesn’t try to be something he’s not. He’s just always seemed like such a genuine, thoughtful person. He’s had his stumbles, like everyone, but always remained positive and appreciative of what he had. The epitome of laid back & going with flow. Love him!

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      He’s also simply FUN and intelligent with tons of charisma. He gives a great interview and I was reminded of that when he was on The Late Show a few days ago. There’s something about his personality that reminds me of Woody Harrelson, they both appear to be a certain kind of man and then they take sharp turns at ever opportunity which keeps you on your toes and leaves you confused and entertained at the same time. I always get the feeling that he knows exactly who he is and he’s not embarrassed by any of it. Also not by his earlier days of being the rom-com man. I LOVE Fool’s Gold. It’s a terrible movie but he and Kate Hudson are so charming and hot that they make it awesome.

  4. AG-UK says:

    I have always liked him and I am from Texas as well. He and Tommy Lee Jones and Sissy Spacek have accents I really like the sound of.

  5. Jayna says:

    He handled that well and authentically.

    I’ve enjoyed his acting these last several years and his interesting projects.
    Sea of Trees, directed by Gus Van Sant, may not have been very good, but all of the flashback scenes between Naomi Watts and Matthew McConaughey as husband and wife and the discord,, etc., were great, and it was almost like watching a play with the dialogue. It was just great acting between them and worth seeing the movie just to appreciate the scenes between those two. I didn’t even mind the whole movie, Matthew out in the “Suicide Forest” in Japan wandering around. My sister hated it.

  6. Tig says:

    I haven’t had the heart to watch that interview-reading about it is bad enough. Sam S was such a talent. He played the trainer Frank W in the TV movie about Ruffian a few years ago. He loved horses and it really showed in that performance. He was just so authentic in every role he ever did.
    Back to Matthew- Mud was an amazing movie. He is truly a unique individual. I do hope he gets back to comedies-his timing is incredible.

  7. Pansy says:

    1) love that he rocks the southern accent without sounding dumb (and hate that so many people make that stereotype). A true southern accent can be quite lovely.
    2) I will see that movie although I’m no King fan based on those two actors alone. Talented and beautiful!

    • TQB says:

      People who assume people with southern accents are dumb are the dumb ones, and I’m from New England and know plenty of those idiots. Southern accents to me sound so pleasant and happy.

  8. TQB says:

    I didn’t watch the red carpet question because it seems sad and a little “gotcha.” But the Wired interview is priceless. I don’t care how bad the Dark Tower is, I’m going to sit there and bask in 2 hours of the Idris/Matt show.

  9. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I’m from Texas and remember seeing a midnight showing of Dazed and Confused on campus. He used to get on my last nerve when younger because… accent. Actors seeming to capitalize on their ‘southerness’ is akin to a cheese grater on my brain (Paula Dean, et al). I can lay it on thick too (when I want to). However…. Around the time he lost all that weight, maybe after, his demeanor grew up. His acting swelled with depth and the focus has changed from superficial to meaningful. I’ve enjoyed his older self so much more which is present in his handling of insensitive and puffy entertainment reporters. Still can’t stand his commercials though lol.

  10. Nikki says:

    Am much more affected by Sam Shepard’s passing than how Matthew handled the news, frankly. Sam was such an intelligent, thoughtful, multi talented guy; I had a MAJOR crush for decades…Sad😔

  11. KiddVicious says:

    At least he’s laying off the Botox now. He looked kind of creepy with it. And I can’t figure out if he had is eyes done or if he’s using the tape trick to keep the hooded part up. Sometimes his eyes are hooded, sometimes they’re not.

    Now for a pet peeve which will surely be unpopular. People die, they don’t pass. When someone says “my grandpa passed” I’m thinking “his driving test? the Bar?, what did he pass?” There is nothing wrong with saying someone has died. Euphemisms don’t make it any better. And don’t get me started on the Rainbow Bridge.

  12. brooksie says:

    I work closely with his foundation (along with many other “celebrity” charities) and he is one of the only celebrities who is so truly devoted to their work. It’s very refreshing and I have such a huge amount of respect for him.

  13. Shirurusu says:

    Who plays Etta in this movie? I loved the books but I’m suspicious about this adaptation.

    Matthew handled that well, really stupid of the reporter though to press him and tell him at a premiere (I didn’t watch the clip). I re-watched A Time To Kill not too long ago and man Matthew has been hot for a long time. Samuel L is also awesome in it.