Brother-in-law of Judy Nugent.
Career began in New York City and won his first acting job playing the role of Muff Potter in a small stage production of "Tom Sawyer". He relocated to try his luck in Los Angeles after years of struggle back East.
He became a close friend of James Dean after playing a small role in Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and reportedly was devastated when Dean was killed. Adams began behaving recklessly and was arrested for speeding nine times in one year. He was placed on probation.
He is a graduate of St. Peter's College.
He is one of four actors typically named in connection with the "Rebel Without a Cause (1955) Curse", a widely repeated urban legend.
He joined the U.S. Coast Guard in 1952, allegedly to avoid being drafted into the Army during the Korean War.
He once worked at the Warners Theater in Beverly Hills as a doorman, usher and maintenance man, but was fired after putting his own name up on a marquee board as a promoting stunt. He also freely used his friendships with James Dean and Elvis Presley for self-promotion. He once claimed he was being stalked by a crazed female James Dean fan and had himself photographed at Dean's grave, pensively clutching flowers.
Joined the United States Coast Guard to avoid being drafted into the Army during the Korean War, and served three years (1952-1955).
On the night of Feb 7, 1968, Nick was supposed to have dinner with Erwin Roeder, his lawyer and friend. Nick never showed up. Concerned, Roeder then went to Adams' home, found the actor's car in his garage, broke a window to enter the house, and discovered the actor dead in his bedroom.
Raised in Garfield, NJ
Screen and television actor.
Shortly before his death, Nick bought a plane ticket with his own money and flew to Rome to co-star with Aldo Ray in a sci-fi horror movie called "Murder in the Third Dimension". Once he got there he found out no one had told him the project had been scrapped.
Spent $8,500 on advertising to win a 1963 Best Supporting Actor Academy Award nomination for Twilight of Honor (1963), but lost the award on Oscar night to Melvyn Douglas in Hud (1963). Reportedly was devastated by the loss as he was sure he would win the Oscar.
The son of Peter Adamshock and Catherine Kutz, Nick's father was a Ukrainian-born anthracite coal miner. Despite being broke, the family left town when Nick was five years old, after his uncle was killed in a mining accident, and wound up in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Was friends with Robert Conrad.
Was offered a playing position in minor league baseball as a high school teen with the St. Louis Cardinals but turned it down because of the low pay. He briefly worked as a bat boy for the Jersey City Giants, a local minor league team.