James Dean was born 85 years ago today — 2.8.31. He died 60 and 1/3 years ago, at age 24. Today a 2009 video interview with the late Dennis Stock, whose photo-taking relationship with Dean was the basis of Life, the Anton Corbijn film with Dane Dehaan and Robert Pattinson, was posted on the N.Y. Times website. The author is documentarian David Snider, who was friendly with Stock.
Snider says Life didn’t capture the truth about Dean and Stock’s relationship. “I felt it wasn’t accurate,” Snider writes. “Although it had that mid-50s look and feel, its creators invented a story about a reluctant actor and an annoying, persistent, acerbic photographer. I thought: ‘No, no, no. That’s not really how it happened.’
“In real life, Dennis was a compelling, intense man with passion and respect for his subjects. Dean understood this, and he was intrigued by the craft of photography, too. In fact, he took pictures of Dennis while they were together.”