The Southern Methodist University graduate, who died Thursday, was best known for his paired off-Broadway hits from the late ’70s-early ’80s, Lone Star and Laundry and Bourbon, bittersweet comedies of Texas realism that have been produced around the country. He also wrote the film scripts for such movies as Kingfish with John Goodwin and Reckless with Aidan Quinn. McLure died at his home in Marina del Rey, California, after a long struggle with liver cancer.
James McLure was part of the fabled ‘SMU Mafia’ that included the late director Garland Wright and Tony Award-winning set designer John Arnone. They first gained attention in New York in the mid-70s with their off-Broadway Lion Theater Company. For the past 15 years, McLure has taught at the University of Montana, where he was part of The Colony, a workshop for writers. Greg Johnson, the artistic director of the Montana Repertory Theatre, penned this tribute.