Even so, for decades, there have been rumors that James Dean was bisexual and maybe quite possibly gay. Tab Hunter , a former s matinee idol and friend of the Rebel Without a Cause star who publicly came out of the closet in , weighed in on the gossip when I sat down with him at South by Southwest to talk about his new Jeffrey Schwarz -directed documentary, Tab Hunter Confidential. Hunter, now 83, said he knew "Jimmy pretty well" because his friend Dick Clayton was his agent. He and Angeli apparently wanted to marry but never did because her mother was against it. As far as I know [about] Jimmy, no," Hunter said.
Paul Newman — in my opinion, the sexiest actor who ever lived — was allegedly bisexual, and had affairs with Marlon Brando and James Dean — at certain points also among the sexiest actors to ever live. Says the gossip:. Paul Newman was a bisexual, and had many on-location affairs — these are some of the claims writer Darwin Porter says were made by Marlon Brando. Paul Newman had just as many on-location affairs as the rest of us, and he was just as bisexual as I was.
According to Tyrnauer, the threat of exposure was real and ever-present for these entertainers. Studio contracts contained so-called "moral clauses" that could instantly vaporize a lucrative career. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Police Department's vice squad were all too willing to bust celebrities, often working in cahoots with the press in their quest to hobble reputations.
Dean's mainstream status as a cultural icon is best embodied in the title of his most cited role in Rebel Without a Cause. His enduring fame and popularity rests on only three films, his entire starring output. He was the first person to receive a posthumous Academy Award nomination for Best Actor and remains the only person to have two such nominations posthumously. The family spent some years there, and by all accounts young Jimmy was very close to his mother.