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James Dean Would be Eighty Today—Seems Impossible
James Dean

Still his three films live on.  I re-read A. E. Housman’s poem “To an Athlete Dying Young,” but realized Dean had more self-knowledge than Housman’s athlete, as shown by the quotes below.

James Dean Quotes

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

To my way of thinking, an actor's course is set even before he's out of the cradle.

The only greatness for man is immortality.

The gratification comes in the doing, not in the results.

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.

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

Being an actor is the loneliest thing in the world. You are all alone with your concentration and imagination, and that's all you have.

But you can't show some far off idyllic conception of behavior if you want the kids to come and see the picture. You've got to show what it's really like, and try to reach them on their own grounds.

I also became close to nature, and am now able to appreciate the beauty with which this world is endowed.

I think the one thing this picture shows that's new is the psychological disproportion of the kids' demands on the parents. Parents are often at fault, but the kids have some work to do, too.

I want to be a Texan 24 hours a day.

If a man can bridge the gap between life and death, if he can live on after he's dead, then maybe he was a great man.

Only the gentle are ever really strong.

Studying cows, pigs and chickens can help an actor develop his character. There are a lot of things I learned from animals. One was that they couldn't hiss or boo me.

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

To grasp the full significance of life is the actor's duty; to interpret it his problem; and to express it his dedication.

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.

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

When an actor plays a scene exactly the way a director orders, it isn't acting. It's following instructions. Anyone with the physical qualifications can do that.