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Renaldo & Clara (1978)

Sam Shepard was a rising star in the New York theater world when he hit the road with Bob Dylan‘s all-star Rolling Thunder Revue that crisscrossed America in 1975. During the tour, the duo collaborated on the loose script for this roman a clef oddity — still unavailable in its four-hour entirety — that mixes staged scenes featuring Dylan as Renaldo and Shepard as Rodeo with rocking concert footage and behind-the-music interviews. — Ethan Alter (Photo: Everett Collection)

Sam Shepard Remembered: 13 Big Movies

Sam Shepard, whose death was announced on July 31, 2017, was revered as a playwright, but made an equally big mark in movies, as screenwriter, director, and actor. Yet it was music that provided his entrance to films, through his time with Bob Dylan on the Rolling Thunder Revue tour that led the pair to collaborate on Renaldo & Clara, released in 1978. So, too, was the Terrence Malick masterpiece Days of Heaven, which brought him to mainstream attention. By 1983, he earned an Academy Award nomination for The Right Stuff. Click through the photos above for more of his career highlights on the big screen, including three films with longtime off-screen partner Jessica Lange, and his roles in such enduring big hits as Steel Magnolias, The Pelican Brief, Black Hawk Down, and The Notebook.