James Dean at the Griffith Observatory


Iconic actor, James Dean's Rebel Without a Cause embodies emotionally tormented teenage angst, we visited the Griffith Observatory where a memorial exists and key scenes from the classic film were shot in spring 1955.

There are not many stronger images of brooding malcontent than that of James Dean posing in his distressed jeans, white t-shirt and red casual jacket. Dean's lasting image and iconic status were defined by his acting appearances in three major Hollywood films, Rebel Without A Cause 1955, East of Eden 1955 and Giant 1956.

The film that has lasting significant was James Dean's, Rebel Without A Cause, of which a number of scenes were shot at the Griffith Observatory. The film went on to achieve international success and inspired fans of the actor to visit the Griffith Observatory location.

The emotionally troubled character Jim Stark, played by Dean in this film marked a cultural change, epitomising the rising voice of the young America. J Dean, after his untimely death in a car crash on the 30th September 1955 went on to become a symbol of young rebellion and the countercultural values of the time.  His death at a young age helped guarantee a legendary status, he was the first actor to receive a posthumous Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

The Griffith Observatory featured prominently in two sequences of the film Rebel Without A Cause, and a bust was placed on the west side of the grounds to mark the significance of the location.

The Griffith Observatory itself sits on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood in L.A’s Griffith Park, commanding a breathtaking view of the famous Hollywood sign and providing a wonderful view of the Los Angeles skyline.


The Griffith Observatory itself is quite remarkable and offers an array of information and is considered to be one of the premier observatories of its kind in the world. If your able to visit this location then you won't be disappointed...