(left rumored sat-foto - right the late James Dean)

Time Warner announced this morning that they had successfully cloned the late James Dean using the latest scientific techniques. Rapid growth enhancement (RGE) treatments mean that the clone has a physical age of 21 despite a real age of under a month. Since James Dean (2) as he will be known was hatched he has also been undergoing computer stimulated learning on all known information about the late film star.

With a 'living clone' like Ross Perot (2) and Arnold Shwarzenegger (2) or popular soccer stars 'the Gazzas' memories can be transferred on line from the cloned subject via the latest brain-to-PC linking technology pioneered by MicroTel. With a 'dead' subject like Dean the process is substantially more difficult and subsequently expensive but the studio is hopeful that it's multi million dollar investment will bear fruit. The studio believes the re-born star will be ready to make movies by the end of the year.

Despite only making three feature films James Dean was widely regarded as a talented actor and he became a movie legend after his tragic death in a car crash at the age of 24.

Studio sources claim that Dean 2's developing personality is remarkably similar to the late stars and he is already showing burgeoning acting talent. Some speculative tabloid reports have claimed that Dean is already smoking sixty cigarettes a day and annoying partygoers with his bongo playing.

The world media are most interested however in investigating the cloned star's sexuality. Despite his sex symbol status while alive, after his death Dean has been the subject of frenzied speculation that he was in fact a closet homosexual or at least bi-sexual.

Studio publicity executive Jack Hawks commented "No one knows the truth about the late James Dean's sexuality." But with a wink he added, "our lad has certainly been showing a more than healthy interest in his nurses."

World wide interest in the project is intense. Speculation is rife that if the move is successful even more dead stars could be resurrected despite the astronomical costs involved. Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart are both being discussed in Hollywood while the Democrats are apparently "very interested" in returning the original JFK to politics. Late son and former Mayor of California, John junior, who was killed in a terrorist attack ten years ago, is another possibility. Kennedy junior is known to have recorded his personality on DVD2 a week or so before he died. Action movie specialists Sony Carolco are rumoured to be planning a clone of the late Bruce Lee though there seems to be a legal problem with access to the necessary genetic material.

Dean's imminent return to celluloid is whipping up a political storm all around the world. Opinion is divided on ethical considerations, the general public mostly welcoming the process with open arms, telephone polls have shown a marked majority in favour while fund raising efforts have been begun by numerous fan clubs hoping to re-create their idols.

Some commentators are claiming that Warners computer enhanced education of the star (they claim it will only take another month for completion) amounts to little more than brain washing. Medical science has of course been cloning organs for years but living subjects are still relatively rare. The actual scientific process behind cloning is nothing new. The first mammal, Dolly the sheep was cloned in the late 1990's. RGE was perfected soon after by scientists working for Independence Party chief Ross Perot. Perot's clone was the first success story, taking over the ailing ex-presidential candidate's business and political interests just before the original died.

Since then the process has been used most spectacularly in the sporting field. There are three cloned versions of Paul Gascoine alive today, two of them playing for the same team in the English first division. The real Gascoine (70) is apparently delighted describing his replicas as "canny lads". Unfortunately like the original the clones have been plagued with injury leaving football bosses disappointed at the return on their investment. Gazza 4 is the latest sufferer of a broken leg.

Dean (2) will be the first clone from a dead host subject. It has been helped by the full co-operation of the late star's estate and a cast iron commitment to the project by Time Warner. Surviving relatives and lack of finance have barred some of the most obviously commercial prospects for the entertainment industry. A huge debate is surrounding a number of plans to clone Elvis Presley, fans are divided on what age the clone should be while his surviving family have vetoed the project. Legally full permission must be obtained from relatives before a cloning project can be undertaken however some senators wish the law to be changed to allow Presley "a national hero and a fine American" to be re-born. The Presley-Jackson estate have the finance to fund the project themselves though they are understood to be reluctant after having their fingers burnt in this area in the past (Michael successfully cloned himself three years ago but suffered minor brain damage in an abortive attempt to transfer his own consciousness to the clone.)

The Pope and other religious leaders have denounced the use of all cloning technology. Rome claims the process is "grossly immoral" and a sin against God. Studio bosses are of course lapping up the publicity. They already have Dean (2) pencilled in for three projects including a boxing film and an action thriller.

from "Future Fantastic" by Joe Middleton