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50 James Dean Quotes About Love and Freedom

These James Dean quotes will inspire you to live fast and forgive quickly.

James Dean was an iconic actor known for his role in the film Rebel Without a Cause. He earned a posthumous Academy Award nomination for Best Actor after his death in a car accident. Read these James Dean quotes about love, rebellion, and freedom to honor his life and legacy.

Although James Dean was only 24 years old at the time of his death, he was still able to leave a major impact on the world during his short time on earth. These quotes are great examples of why he became a cultural icon.

James Dean appealed to the public in a major way. This collection of inspirational quotes highlights his magnetism, charisma, and insight. Share these James Dean quotes with your friends and family to motivate them to always live fast and follow their dreams.

Don’t forget to also check out these TobyMac quotes about love and music.

James Dean quotes to honor his life and legacy

1. “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today.” – James Dean

2. “The gratification comes in the doing, not in the results.” – James Dean

3. “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.” – James Dean

4. “My purpose in life does not include a hankering to charm society.” – James Dean

5. “Am I in love? Absolutely. I’m in love with ancient philosophers, foreign painters, classic authors, and musicians who have died long ago. I’m a passionate lover. I fawn over these people. I have given them my heart and my soul. The trouble is, I’m unable to love anyone tangible. I have sacrificed a physical bond, for a metaphysical relationship. I am the ultimate idealistic lover.” – James Dean

6. “Remember: Life is short, break the rules.” – James Dean

7. “I think the prime reason for existence, for living in this world is discovery.” – James Dean

8. “Trust and belief are two prime considerations. You must not allow yourself to be opinionated.” – James Dean

9. “I’m a serious-minded and intense little devil, terribly gauche and so tense I don’t see how people stay in the same room with me. I know I wouldn’t tolerate myself.” – James Dean

10. “Take it easy driving– the life you save may be mine.” – James Dean

James Dean quotes that will inspire you to live fast

11. “You try to be yourself, do only what you’ve always done and like to do, and right away, you’re tagged as an oddball.” – James Dean

12. “Forgive quickly, kiss slowly; Love truly, laugh uncontrollably; And never regret anything that makes you smile.” – James Dean

13. “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.” – James Dean

14. “Live fast, die young, leave a good-looking corpse.” – James Dean

15. “Only the gentle are ever really strong.” – James Dean

16. “I also became close to nature, and am now able to appreciate the beauty with which this world is endowed.” – James Dean

17. “Being a good actor isn’t easy. Being a man is even harder. I want to be both before I’m done.” – James Dean

18. “The only greatness for man is immortality.” – James Dean

19. “I want to be a Texan 24 hours a day.” – James Dean

20. “To grasp the full significance of life is the actor’s duty; to interpret it his problem, and to express it his dedication.” – James Dean

Insightful James Dean quotes

21. “Death can’t be considered because, if you’re afraid to die, there’s no room in your life to make discoveries.” – James Dean

22. “I don’t want anything seventy-thirty. Fifty-fifty’s always good enough for me. I don’t want to have to give anybody seventy; I don’t want anybody to give me seventy. I want fifty.” – James Dean

23. “To my way of thinking, an actor’s course is set even before he’s out of the cradle.” – James Dean

24. “An actor should be judged by his performance only.” – James Dean

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

26. “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.” – James Dean

27. “The only way to make a scene realistic is to do it the way you know it would really happen.” – James Dean

28. “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.” – James Dean

29. “The cinema is a very truthful medium because the camera doesn’t let you get away with anything. On stage, you can even loaf a little, if you’re so inclined.” – James Dean

30. “I can’t let in the light. It will destroy my performance like light destroys film.” – James Dean

James Dean quotes that will make you think differently

31. “You can do ‘Hamlet’ while performing cartwheels… as long as the audience sees your eyes – you can make the performance real.” – James Dean

32. “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

33. “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.” – James Dean

34. “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.” – James Dean

35. “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.” – James Dean

36. “You’re tearing me apart!” – James Dean

37. “If I can keep this up and nothing interferes with my progress, one of these days I might be able to contribute something to the world.” – James Dean

38. “I used to fly around quite a bit, you know? I took a lot of unnecessary chances on the highways. And I started racing, and now I drive on the highways, I’m extra cautious because no one knows what they’re doing half the time. You don’t know what this guy is going to do or that one.” – James Dean

39. “A fish that is in the water has no choice that he is. Genius would have it that we swim in sand. We are fish and we drown.” – James Dean

40. “In the short span of his lifetime, an actor must learn all there is to know, experience all there is to experience, or approach that state as closely as possible. He must be superhuman in his efforts to store away in the core of his subconscious everything that he might be called upon to use in the expression of his art.” – James Dean

More James Dean quotes

41. “If I had one day when I didn’t have to be all confused and didn’t have to feel that I was ashamed of everything. If I felt that I belonged someplace. You know?” – James Dean

42. “Reality doesn’t have any preconceived ideas. You’ve got to learn how to smoke the cigarette, not act smoking the cigarette. You need to drink the drink, not act drinking the drink. You’ve got to do things and not show them.” – James Dean

43. “I wouldn’t like me if I had to be around me.” – James Dean

44. “So the director’s task is just that – to direct, to point the way. Then the actor takes over. And he must be allowed the space, the freedom to express himself in the role. Without that space, an actor is no more than an unthinking robot with a chest-full of push-buttons.” – James Dean

45. “Racing is the only time I feel whole.” – James Dean

46. “I’m not going to go through life with one arm tied behind my back.” – James Dean

47. “The clouds are lined with silver and the glass is half full.” – James Dean

48. “I don’t have to explain anything to anybody.” – James Dean

49. “Don’t sweat the small stuff. You are who you are meant to be. Dance as if no one’s watching. Love as if it’s all you know.” – James Dean

50. “If you’re not afraid, if you take everything you are, everything worthwhile in you and direct it at one goal, one ultimate mark, you’ve got to get there.” – James Dean

What are your favorite James Dean quotes about love that make you want to live fast?

Many famous quotes come from the mind of James Dean. This actor had a unique perspective on the world and offered valuable insight with his words of wisdom. This collection of quotes may change the way you think about certain things in life.

Whether you prefer James Dean movie quotes or his own personal thoughts about life, you’ll love this collection of the best James Dean quotes. Take the time to read these ideas and insights as a way to celebrate a talented artist who tragically passed at a young age.

What are your favorite James Dean quotes and sayings that make you think, ‘am I in love?’ Let us know in the comment section below.

Samantha Williams
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