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Watch Matthew McConaughey's emotional reaction on hearing of Sam Shepard's death

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Sam Shepard passed away on Thursday

Matthew McConaughey
Sharnaz Shahid
Deputy Online Editor
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Matthew McConaughey was left blindsided when he heard the news that his good friend and acclaimed playwright Sam Shepard had passed away. The Hollywood star, who was promoting new film Dark Tower on Tuesday, was asked on the red carpet how he felt about his Mud co-star's death – to which a bewildered Matthew replied: "What? Sam Shepard moved on?" Visibly shaken by the tragic news, the actor said: "Gosh dammit. Look, I'm not going to trivialise that situation, I just heard about it for the first time."

STORY: Actor and playwright Sam Shepard dies aged 73

Praising the late star, Matthew added: "But I always told [director] Jeff Nichols this, 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." Trying to digest the news, Matthew then said, "He moved on today?" He added: "We lost one of the great ones. Great writer, great mind. All right, see you in the next one, Sam."

sam shepard© Photo: Getty Images

Sam Shepard passed away aged 73 

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Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Sam passed away aged 73 on Thursday at his home in Kentucky, US. The American screenwriter, who was also nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar in 1983, suffered complications from motor neuron disease (ALS). A spokesman confirmed that his family were with him when he died. He is survived by his three children, Jesse, Hannah and Walker, and his sisters, Sandy and Roxanne Rogers. Sam wrote over 40 plays during his career, and appeared in films including The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford alongside Brad Pitt, and August: Osage County. He most recently starred in the Netflix hit Bloodline as Robert Rayburn.