15 Nov Tributes to Kevin Jarre (1954-2011)
The story of Tombstone’s creator, told by those who knew him.
Kevin Jarre was capable of greatness.
That was my first thought when I heard he had died in Santa Monica on April 3, 2011, at age 56. You can see his talent in his screenplays upon which the following films were based:
• The Tracker (1988): A terrific made-for-TV Western, starring Kris Kristofferson and Scott Wilson, in which I detected some of the lines he would later use in Tombstone.
• Glory (1989): About the 54th Massachusetts regiment, this is the best movie ever made about the Civil War.
• Tombstone (1993): The most important and influential Western of the last 30 years—the pompous and self-important Clint Eastwood film Unforgiven and Kevin Costner’s Dances With Wolves not excepted.
• The Devil’s Own (1997): The best screenplay I’ve ever read about the IRA and a conflicted Irish-American’s feelings about Ireland’s troubles.
Yet bitterness may have destroyed Jarre’s talent. The scripts for the last two films, in much publicized incidents, were taken out of Jarre’s hands, chopped up and hastily rewritten. On Tombstone, Jarre was also fired as director for moving too slowly.