The actor, known for roles in iconic films such as “Rebel Without a Cause” and “East of Eden,” died in a car accident in 1955 at age 24.
However, Dean will make an unexpected return to the big screen in the film “Finding Jack.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, Dean’s face and body will be used by directors Anton Ernst and Tati Golykh, who obtained the image rights from the actor’s family.
The outlet notes that a realistic version of James Dean will be digitally inserted in the movie, which is based on Gareth Crocker’s 2011 novel about the abandonment of more than 10,000 military dogs after the end of the Vietnam War.
“We searched high and low for the perfect character to portray the role of Rogan, which has some extreme[ly] complex character arcs, and after months of research, we decided on James Dean,” said Ernst
He added: “We feel very honored that his family supports us and will take every precaution to ensure that his legacy as one of the most epic film stars to date is kept firmly intact. The family views this as his fourth movie, a movie he never got to make. We do not intend to let his fans down.”
THR reports that the filmmakers are hoping Dean’s appearance ushers in a new era of using CGI cast members. However, several fans voiced their distaste for the posthumous casting on Twitter.
“Don’t do it,” one user wrote on Twitter. “Leave our legends to shine as they did and create new ones with living actors. There are a lot of great people who are alive with talent to share.”
“Sorry but this is taking tech way too far! James Dean is an icon of 50’s cinema and personally I find this disturbing and unnerving,” another user shared.
“Imagine auditioning for a role and losing out to a dead guy from the 50s,” a third user said.
“Rendered Without a Cause #JamesDean,” another user mocked.
“Finding Jack” is currently scheduled to hit theaters on Veterans Day 2020.