James Dean, iconic film star of the 1950s, will be adding a new, posthumous role to his resume thanks to the magic of modern computer generated imaging.
As if the competition wasn’t stiff enough in Hollywood, living actors may now have to compete with dead ones for upcoming roles.
The Hollywood Reporter broke the news earlier today that iconic film actor James Dean — who was killed in a car crash in 1955 at age 24 — has been posthumously cast in the Vietnam era action-drama Finding Jack.
The movie will include James Dean via CGI using actual footage and photos of the actor, who is best known for his work on Rebel Without a Cause and East of Eden. Finding Jack itself will be completely live-action; however, James Dean with be created as ‘full body’ CGI, with another actor voicing the role.
Finding Jack will be Directed by Anton Ernst and Tati Golykh, with the project coming from the filmmakers’ own recently launched production house Magic City Films, The production company obtained the rights to use Dean’s image from his family, and Canadian VFX banner Imagine Engine will be working alongside South African VFX company MOI Worldwide to re-create what the filmmakers describe as “a realistic version of James Dean.”
Based on the Gareth Crocker novel of the same name, Finding Jack was adapted by Maria Sova and is based on the existence and abandonment of more than 10,000 military dogs at the end of the Vietnam War. James Dean Dean will play a character called Rogan, considered a secondary lead role.
“We searched high and low for the perfect character to portray the role of Rogan, which has some extreme complex character arcs, and after months of research, we decided on James Dean,” said Ernst, who also produces with Golykh for Magic City Films alongside Donald A. Barton of Artistry Media Group.
“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.”