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William Bast (born April 3, 1931) is an American screenwriter and author currently living in Los Angeles. In addition to writing scripts for motion pictures and television, he is the author of two biographies of the screen actor James Dean. Bast was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the son of Gilbert Bast and Bernice Fleischmann. He began his early education in Milwaukee, transferring to Kenosha when his family moved there. Moving back to Milwaukee, he subsequently graduated from Wauwatosa High school, then enrolled at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. When his family moved to Los Angeles, he transferred to the UCLA, where he majored in Theater Arts, rooming with a fellow Theater Arts student from Indiana named James Dean. In 1952 he moved to New York to join Dean and pursue a career in radio and television. There, he initially worked in the Press Relations department at CBS and subsequently, in 1953, wrote his first scripts for the NBC television sitcom The Aldrich Family. After the death of Dean in an automobile accident in 1955, Bast chronicled his five year relationship with the actor in James Dean: a Biography.