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U.S. Originals

James Dean

1931-1955

On February 8, 1931, James Byron Dean was born in Marion, Indiana. He established the base of his later career as an artist by enrolling at the U.C.L.A. with drama as major subject. That was in 1950. Two years later he headed to New York City thinking he was ready for the Broadway. He got a first role in 'The Jaguar, 1952, and became member of the 'Actors Studio', which is THE school for actors, in the same year. Elia Kazan, one of the founders of Actors Studio, helped Jimmy Dean to break through in the movie world: it was the movie 'East of Eden', based on a John Steinbeck book. This role built is unforgettable image as the rebellious, but sensible teenager. In the same year he was the leading role in another classic movie, 'Rebel Without a Cause'.

He couldn't attend the premier of his last role in 'Giants'. James Dean died in an auto accident with his Porsche Spyder 550 near Cholame, California, on September 30, 1955, at the age of 24.

These three roles made him to a legend, an idol of his generation and the ones that followed.

He once said: "If a man can bridge the gap between life and death, if he can live on after he has died, then maybe he was a great man."

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