If you knew a deeply personal secret about someone—a very public someone—would you decide that it was okay to reveal the information after your own death?
I'm not sure how Elizabeth Taylor came to this decision, but in 1997 she told journalist Kevin Sessums that she knew a particularly troubling piece of information about James Dean. According to Taylor, he confessed the shocker while they co-starred in the movie Giant, and she swore to him that she would take his secret to her grave.
Now that Elizabeth Taylor has passed on, Sessums has chosen to reveal the secret in an article he recently published for The Daily Beast.
Fourteen years ago, Elizabeth told Sessums, "I loved Jimmy. I'm going to tell you something, but it's off the record until I die. OK?"
"When Jimmy was 11 and his mother passed away, he began to be molested by his minister," Taylor said.
"I think that haunted him the rest of his life. In fact, I know it did. We talked about it a lot. During Giant we'd stay up nights and talk and talk, and that was one of the things he confessed to me."
Dean was killed at the age of 24 on September 30, 1955, when his Porsche crashed in Salinas, California, shortly after filming Giant.
It's unlikely anyone will ever know if the molestation really happened or not, and I'm not sure what good it does to release the information now. It certainly seems strange that Taylor would have shared such confidential information with the caveat that it could go on the record after she died.
I guess we should be impressed that Mr. Sessums honored his promise to Elizabeth Taylor, and waited nearly a whole week before spilling the James Dean SHOCKING DARK SECRET to the entire world. I think it would have been even more honorable if Sessums had decided to take it to his own grave, though.
What's your take on this supposed revelation about James Dean?
Image via Flickr/ElizaPeyton