Rebel w/o a cause

Whatever’s inside making me what I am, it’s like film. Film only works in the dark. Tear it all open and let in the light and you kill it.

American teenagers of the mid-1950s, when James Dean's major films were made, identified with Dean and the roles he played, especially that of Jim Stark in Rebel Without A Cause.
The film depicts the dilemma of a typical teenager of the time, who feels that no one, not even his peers, can understand him.

Joe Hyams says that Dean was "one of the rare stars, like Rock Hudson and Montgomery Clift, whom both men and women find sexy".

Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today.

Greatness James Dean

The only greatness for man is immortality.

Racing James Dean

Racing is the only time I feel whole.

Trust James Dean

Trust and belief are two prime considerations. You must not allow yourself to be opinionated.

Manifest James Dean

To me, acting is the most logical way for people's neuroses to manifest themselves, in this great need we all have to express ourselves.


James Dean purchased various vehicles after filming for East of Eden had concluded, including a Triumph Tiger T110 and a Porsche 356. Just before filming began on Rebel Without a Cause, he competed in his first professional event at the Palm Springs Road Races, which was held in Palm Springs, California on March 26–27, 1955. Dean achieved first place in the novice class, and second place at the main event. His racing continued in Bakersfield a month later, where he finished first in his class and third overall. Dean hoped to compete in the Indianapolis 500, but his busy schedule made this vision impossible.

New York

Live fast, die young, leave a good looking corpse.

I think there is only one form of greatness for man. If a man can bridge the gap between life and death. I mean, if he can live on after he has died, then maybe he was a great man. To me the only success, the only greatness, is immortality.

James Dean in

New York

My purpose in life does not include a hankering to charm society.

During this production shoot James Dean appeared in an informal black & white TV commercial in which he responded to questions posed by actor Gig Young. Ironically, Dean was promoting safe driving and informed viewers, "People say racing is dangerous, but I'd rather take my chances on the track any day than on the highway." Before he left the studio he added one piece of advice: "Drive safely, because the life you save may be mine." Dean was wearing the very hat and clothing he wore for this movie throughout the commercial. He died a few weeks later in a car crash.


1952Boxing TrainerUncredited
1952Youth at Soda FountainUncredited
1955Cal Trask
1955Jim StarkActor
1956Jett Rink

There is no way to be truly great in this world. We are all impaled on the crook of conditioning.
-James Dean

Dean on Acting

Being a good actor isn't easy. Being a man is even harder. I want to be both before I'm done.

East of eden

My neuroticism expresses itself in the dramatic. Why do most actors act? To express the fantasies in which they have involved themselves.

New York’s a fertile, generous city if you can accept the violence and decadence.

New York

James Dean on


An actor must interpret life, and in order to do so must be willing to accept all the experiences life has to offer. In fact, he must seek out more of life than life puts at his feet.