Matthew McConaughey’s father, James, died in 1992. At the time, McConaughey dealt with his grief, and got through the filming of Dazed and Confused. Today, he can look back at his father with humor, even up to the very end. Two things happened when James died that were so in character, his son can’t help but laugh.
McConaughey was a guest on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast on Oct. 22. While discussing his autobiography Greenlights, which includes recollections of his childhood and parents, McConaughey shared two outrageous details of his father’s death.
Matthew McConaughey’s father told a big fat lie before he died
McConaughey’s father went for medical tests like his family requests. He just didn’t tell them the truth about his results.
“Dad smoked two, three packs of filterless Camels a day,” McConaughey told Maron. “He had gone to Baylor Medical where they do this experiment where they put the dye in you to see how your aorta and everything’ss running. He’d come back and the next day would be on the golf course having a cigarette. I go, ‘Pop, you sure you’re supposed to be smoking that?’ He says, ‘Oh yeah, son. Doc says I’ve got the heart of a 22-year-old high hurdler.”
When James McConaughey died of a heart attack, the McConaughey family was ready to read the doctor the riot act.
“So boom, he has a heart attack and we’re like, the whole family, we’re going we’re going to get that doctor,” McConaughey said. “We’re going to get his ass. We barge down there going, ‘You said our dad had the heart of a 22-year-old high hurdler, you son of a bitch.’ He’s like, ‘What? No, look at these graphs. I told him don’t ever smoke again. You’re all clogged up and blocked.’ He was completely bullsh*tting.”
No Matthew McConaughey movies go where his father did
The way James McConaughey died was outrageous enough to be a movie. In fact, if it happened in a movie, audiences might not believe it.
“He always told us, ‘Boys, when I move on, when I get out of this place, I’m going to be making love to your mother,’” McConaughey said S”on of a bitch did it. He said that, ‘When I go, boys, I’m going to be making love to your mother.’ And then sure enough.”
James McConaughey did have a heart attack after sleeping with his wife, Kay. She didn’t even tell Matthew until that evening.
“It was the Monday night, so he had made love to my mother, climaxed, had a heart attack that morning, at 6:30,” McConaughey said. “Mom didn’t call me until 7 o’clock that night. I never asked her why she waited, but she called me. I could tell she was catching her breath. She goes, ‘Your dad died.’ Shock, hit my knees, blah blah blah. Composed myself, got a cup of coffee, jug of water and drove home.”
Even his death made a big scene
Given the circumstances of his death, the ambulance wanted to be delicate about the way they retrieved the body. Kay still helped James make one last scene.
“I found out later, because when the ambulance came to get him at the house, obviously all the neighbors came out in the street,” McConaughey said. “The neighbors that were somewhat friends came and told me later that Mom, in her negligee nighty that she woke up in, wouldn’t let the paramedics cover him. She kept ripping the sheet off going, ‘Uh uh. I want the world to see why his nickname was Big Jim. Don’t you cover him. That’s how he went out.’ Looney Tunes, man. Carney as all get out.”
Source: WTF with Marc Maron podcast