There will never be an actor with such raw beauty or raw talent as the late James Dean.
The 1950s star was once named “the most promising young cinematographer in 1955” by TIME magazine and has earned the title of a certified heart for his role in Unreasonable rebellion.
However, Dean’s flourishing career was cut short at the age of 24 on September 30, 1955, when his Porsche 550 Spyder was involved in a fatal head-on collision on a California road.
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The actor was driving his iconic red car on 466 with his friend Bill Hickman, mechanic Rolf Wütherich and photographer Sanford Roth, the quartet planning to attend a motorsport race on Sunday. weekend.
Then, an oncoming Ford Tudor veered across the left side of the road.
Dean tried to “bypass” the Tudor, but his car hit the other end. He died at the scene and took his last breath in the arms of his friend, Bill.
His last words were said: “That guy has to stop, he’ll see us.”
The driver of the Ford, Donald Turnupseed, miraculously survived the collision with only minor injuries.
As with most famous people die youngDean’s legendary status only grows in death.
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And the haunting final image of Dean, taken hours before his fatal crash in 1955, quickly became one of the most famous character images of the 20th century.
It was one of the last known photos of the late actor alive. Pictured, Dean is refueling his Porsche – which he nicknamed ‘Asshole – Little Bastard – at a gas station in Sherman Oaks, California.
After loading the tank, Dean returned to his vehicle and sped to his death.
The gas station, known as Blackwell’s Corner General Store, currently pays homage to Dean with a giant mutilated face at the entrance.
Curiously, Dean’s death is also shrouded in a cloak of mystery and myth.
For most celebrities who die young, Dean’s legendary status only grows in death
In a move with eerie omen, Dean filmed a PSA for a safe drive before his untimely death, warning viewers: “Calm down, the life you could save could be mine.”
Many people consider his beloved Porsche as “cursed”. In his 1985 biography Every cloud has a silver lining, Late actor Sir Alec Guinness claims he warned Dean about the car.
Guinness said he and his friend, actress Thelma Moss, ran into Dean while trying to find somewhere to have dinner in Los Angeles a week before his death.
Dean told his pair of Porsches “just delivered”. But Guinness said he warned the late star to never drive it.
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