Terry Ike Clanton's response to the movie...

Peter Sherayko (Texas Jack in Tombstone) visited the Haunted Saloon and talked with Terry Ike Clanton about the movie.

Unfortunately, by the time I got word that a film titled "Tombstone" was getting ready to start filming in Arizona, it was already too late for me to audition and/or be cast in the movie. During the filming, I did speak with a few people on the set about a possible speaking role, but it never came to fruition.

I was still pleased to hear that finally a movie was going to be produced about the true history of Tombstone, the so-called OK Corral gunfight etc. I was told by many people who had read the script, that screen writer / director Kevin Jarre did a terrific job writing a screenplay and script that was historically correct. Believe me, after studying the facts since 1979, I couldn't wait to see the truth finally hit the silver screen, this was finally going to be my dream come true, the world was finally going to see what really happened.

During the filming I got the shocking news that Kevin Jarre was fired from his own movie. Word was quickly out that his replacement would be "Rambo" movie director George Cosmatos. I had never met Kevin Jarre, and I really enjoyed the action-packed "Rambo" movies, so my first thoughts were, maybe this is a good thing. My only negative thoughts at the time, I hope they stay with the facts and the movie doesn't turn into Rambo goes to Tombstone!.

I can still remember how excited I was to see this movie, the film opened on Christmas day in 1993, I was there, popcorn and soda in hand!. The movie opened up with a dramatic voice describing the town of Tombstone's early years, he then described the cowboys as the first known members of organized crime, who were also known by the red sashes they wore! After that opening statement, I knew I was in for a big dis-heartening let down, Hollywood was surely going to entertain me for my seven bucks, but historically they were going to let me down once again.

After the opening narration, the very first scene of the movie showed the cowboys including my cousin Joseph "Ike" Clanton, ruthlessly gunning down and murdering a group of Mexicans in cold blood, during a wedding ceremony. This crap never happened, I thought to myself, ok calm down and enjoy the movie, I started telling myself.

I can remember how disappointed I was just after the movie started. The film which I had hoped would finally separate the true facts from the other fictional movies that preceded it, was once again falling to the almighty dollar of Hollywood sensationalism at it's worst.

I have to admit, I was appalled at the films portrayal of my cousin Joseph "Ike" Clanton's drunken, illiterate, cowardice, buffalo hunter who hadn't had a bath in three months character! Taking nothing away from the actor Steven Lang, who I highly respect as an actor, I feel that Ike Clanton's character was badly mis-represented from his true life persona.

I cannot endorse the film as historical truth, however, I do encourage everyone to see "Tombstone" for what it is, a box office success and an extremely entertaining film. Although I consider "Tombstone" a fictional movie, I was thoroughly entertained and the acting was excellent! Furthermore, I was really surprised that Kurt Russell nor Val Kilmer were not nominated for Academy Awards for their efforts in Tombstone.

Now get ready for TOMBSTONE II "the Clantons' side of the story". Well, not just yet, but this is still in my dreams to one day co-star in a film and story that I feel very passionate about. I truly believe my story is a "slam dunk" box office hit, I can only hope and pray that the right people will get behide my efforts, assist me in writing my first screen play, and finally bringing my story (the Clantons' side of the story) to the silver screen.

Would you like to help me campaign my film making efforts? If so, please write a letter or e-mail the studios expressing your wishes to see Tombstone II "the clantons' side of the story" produced. Be sure to tell them to contact Terry Ike Clanton, otherwise we might have another pro-Earp movie on our hands! <big grin>. If you help to make my dream become a reality, I'll promise you another entertaining, western blockbuster movie!

Or better yet, if you're an executive producer or an accomplished screen writer, call or e-mail The Clanton Ranch and let's start the ball rolling on this bigger than life western sequel.

I contacted Kurt Russell and asked for his opinion about my idea for a sequel to the film Tombstone, revealing the Clantons side of the story. Mr. Russell graciously responded with a thumbs-up on my idea (see below), which has really motivated me to get busy working on the screenplay and film script.

Letter from: Kurt Russell

To: Terry Ike Clanton

(Letter originally dated Feb. 2, 1998)


It sounds like you've got an interesting idea there. It's true that not all Hollywood productions focus on both sides of the story, but hey, every now and then there's one or two that focus on either both sides or the lesser known point of view. Look at "Tora! Tora! Tora!" or maybe even "Dances With Wolves". These movies try to show at least to some degree the lesser appreciated point of view. I'm glad you enjoyed Tombstone. I'd just like to emphasise that while I may play a certain role in a production, that does not entirely demonstrate prejudice on my part toward the character depicted in that role. It's true that ethically, there are some roles I've turned down simply because they were neither edifying or entertaining, but that's on very rare occasion. Most of my roles I've taken were just for fun. I have no particular prejudice toward the Earp familie's side of this story, it's just the one that's had the biggest box office appeal for the longest time. I'd like to see your idea come to fruition. It sounds like the intentions behind it are good. Unfortunately I don't have much say as to what kind of offers I get or script ideas, unless I choose to write and direct something myself. Who knows...maybe I'll do just that. And I'd just like to say that you're never too old to act! Maybe we'll work along side one another someday. In the meantime, keep that dream alive!


Kurt -

Thank you for replying to my letter, and your personal motivation.

As you can see, I'm very passionate about my dream of bringing my Clanton family legacy to the big screen. I don't know if my dream will ever be realized, but I'm giving it one Hell of a shot!

I would have loved to have had some involvement in the movie Tombstone, but wasn't given a chance. However, I was cast in "Showtime at the OK Corral" that aired with Tombstone's cable debut on Showtime. During the filming, I had fun with George Cosmatos. As if it were yesterday, I can remember him asking me with his Greek accent... "So Clanton, what did you think of Tombstone? I paused for a second, then replied, "George, I honestly thought it was one of the most entertaining movies I've ever watched, not very accurate, but very entertaining!. From there, I had all kinds of fun with him!

I feel the American public is ready for a squeal to the movie Tombstone. I also truly believe that it will take support and backing from someone like yourself to see my dream finally realized.

It would not only be a great honor to have the opportunity to work with you on a sequel story, but I truly feel that mixing your outstanding acting ability and direction, with my historical knowledge and stories, we could put together the most entertaining, highest dollar grossing Western movie ever produced. Wow... that sound pretty good doesn't it?

Thank you once again for your inspiration and motivation, everything starts with a dream!


Terry Ike Clanton


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