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Luke Perry looks back on rise to '90210' fame in 1992 interview

The former "Beverly Hills, 90210" actor, who became a superstar in his role as Dylan McKay, discussed what he wanted his legacy to be.
/ Source: TODAY

Luke Perry always knew he'd make his mark in Hollywood.

The actor, who died Monday, talked to Maria Shriver in 1992 for NBC’s “First Person” about finding fame on "Beverly Hills, 90210" — and his plan for sustaining his acting career for years to come.

"I felt weird the first time my mother ever saw me step out of a limousine," confessed the actor, who grew up in the small community of Fredericktown, Ohio. "I felt a little guilty, maybe. I felt a little strange."

Perry, who was just 25 at the time of the interview, revealed that he always dreamed of stardom, but opportunities didn't exist at home. So, after graduating high school, he packed up and headed to Hollywood, making ends meet by shoveling asphalt on a road crew in Los Angeles.

After catapulting to fame playing sensitive bad boy Dylan McKay on the Fox teen drama, Perry soon graced the covers of magazines all over the world.

But the star resisted constant comparisons to another sensitive Hollywood bad boy: "Rebel Without a Cause" star James Dean.

For starters, Perry noted the fact that Dean died in a car crash at age 24.

"I hope to be still working when I'm 30, and 40, and 50, and for however long I want to," the actor revealed.

Pulling that off would take talent and drive, and Perry — who would go on to add several more TV shows, as well as feature films and the Broadway stage, to his résumé — knew he had both.

"I want to do something with my life," Perry shared. "When my time here is up, I don’t want to look back and see that I didn’t do anything."