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vintage Marilyn Monroe James Dean on motorcycle original 1990 Poster 441
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James Dean is an icon of rebel heroes. His death is the proverbial “I was __ when the news aired of his death” for the baby-boomers. James Byron Dean, born February 8, 1931 with a trademark for playing troubled youths. His entire film career of only three films created His enduring fame and popularity; although his untimely death at age of 25 guarantees his status as a legend. Most notably, James received a posthumous Academy Award nomination for Best Actor; he is the first and only person to have two posthumous acting nominations.
The "Seven Gables" apartment house is where James Dean was born to Winton and Mildred Wilson Dean in Marion, Indiana. Young Jimmy and his mother were very close and she was "the only person capable of understanding him” says Michael DeAngelis. He went to Brentwood Public School and studied the violin until 1940 when his mother died of cancer. Shortly after his mother’s death, he went to live with his aunt and uncle in Indiana. There Jimmy formed "had an intimate relationship with his pastor... which began in his senior year of high school and 'endured for many years.” Billy J. Harbin stated. His mother's death caused Jimmy to withdraw; because his mother had been his only real companion. Jimmy recalled: "My mother died when I was eight. The violin was buried too."
Dean introduced himself to Alec Guinness outside a restaurant; the Spyder appeared "sinister". Alec Guinness explained to Dean, "If you get in that car, you will be found dead in it by this time next week." Exactly a week later, Dean crashed the Spyder and died while racing his customized Spyder.
James Dean is "one of the rare stars, like Rock Hudson and Montgomery Clift,” according to Joe Hyams “who both men and women find sexy." Worshipping and reaching for immortality; James Dean got what he wanted. James Dean’s legendary status is attributable to his role in Rebel Without A Cause, his tragic death, and rebellious image.