James Franco

Behind the Lens: 10 Sundance Actors-Turned-Directors

Behind the Lens: 10 Sundance Actors-Turned-Directors

Every time a movie star tries their hand at directing, audiences watch with bated breath. Here are ten stars whose filmmaking efforts landed them a place at the Sundance Film Festival.

ICONOCLASTS season premiere: James Franco + Marina Abramović

ICONOCLASTS season premiere: James Franco + Marina Abramović

The sixth season of the innovative, inspiring ICONOCLASTS — Sundance Channel’s longest-running series — premieres tonight at 8P. ICONOCLASTS is a chance for artists, entrepreneurs, designers, filmmakers and others to spend time with someone from another field who is changing the world around us and how we see ourselves. Tonight, we’ll get to listen in on a conversation between Oscar-nominated actor James Franco and legendary performance artist Marina Abramović. After guiding him through the Marina Abramović Method to help him relax, the artist turns Franco into a living sculpture, a “demi-god,” smearing him with sticky stuff and covering him with gold leaf. It’s a sight to behold…

ICONOCLASTS season premiere: James Franco + Marina Abramović

ICONOCLASTS season premiere: James Franco + Marina Abramović

The sixth season of the innovative, inspiring ICONOCLASTS — Sundance Channel’s longest-running series — premieres tonight at 8P. ICONOCLASTS is a chance for artists, entrepreneurs, designers, filmmakers and others to spend time with someone from another field who is changing the world around us and how we see ourselves. Tonight, we’ll get to listen in on a conversation between Oscar-nominated actor James Franco and legendary performance artist Marina Abramović. After guiding him through the Marina Abramović Method to help him relax, the artist turns Franco into a living sculpture, a “demi-god,” smearing him with sticky stuff and covering him with gold leaf. It’s a sight to behold…

ICONOCLASTS is back! Highly anticipated sixth season premieres October 9

ICONOCLASTS is back! Highly anticipated sixth season premieres October 9

Sundance Channel and Grey Goose Entertainment are set to debut the highly anticipated sixth season of the critically acclaimed series ICONOCLASTS on Tuesday, October 9 at 8P. Each half-hour episode of the innovative six-part series, which will air on Sundance Channel, pairs two visionaries who come together to discuss their lives, influences, passions and creative processes.

ABOUT CHERRY brings the sexy — and the struggle

ABOUT CHERRY brings the sexy — and the struggle

Check out this über-hot trailer for the new movie ABOUT CHERRY from IFC Midnight, starring James Franco, Heather Graham, Dev Patel, Lili Taylor and Ashley Hinshaw.

The Internets react to PROMETHEUS: Dr. Shaw texts & James Franco reviews

The Internets react to PROMETHEUS: Dr. Shaw texts & James Franco reviews

So Ridley Scott’s PROMETHEUS landed in theaters this weekend, and while $51.1 million is nothing to joke about, a group of talking animals did beat it in the box office. The reaction, at least among my friends who saw it, was tepid. Some things about it were great, others…not so much. That said, the cinematics blew their minds and the story provided some food for thought. IndieWire served up their good, bad and ugly thoughts on the film, and people across the Internets are not only chiming in, but having a lot of fun riffing off the film:

Vimeo Awards + Festival (brought to you by Sundance Channel)

Vimeo Awards + Festival (brought to you by Sundance Channel)

Tonight the

FREAKS AND GEEKS on Sundance Channel — Watch your favorite episodes with creator Paul Feig

FREAKS AND GEEKS on Sundance Channel — Watch your favorite episodes with creator Paul Feig

Happy New Year! And if your 2012 resolution is to watch every episode of FREAKS AND GEEKS, then you are in luck. Starting tonight at 7 PM et/pt, Sundance Channel will air them all — including the ones that never saw the light of broadcast. This is the perfect opportunity to reminisce about a time before TV got all Real Housewives and Teen Mom (1999-2000, to be precise). It’s also your chance to get that one friend who has never seen the show hooked. To help us dig deeper into one of the most beloved (by us indie nerds, at least), short-lived TV shows, SUNfiltered spoke to the show’s creator, Paul Feig (BRIDESMAIDS), over the holidays.

Fucking James Franco

Fucking James Franco

For those who don’t follow our Monday Kickstarter best-of’s, Kickstarter.com is a funding platform for music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative projects. If a project doesn’t reach its stated funding goal before time runs out, no money changes hands. One art project that just met its $2,000 goal before its closing date this coming Saturday, thanks to over 100 backers, is “Fucking James Franco,” a collection of erotic fantasies about the art world’s golden boy (read: annoying dude) “that the world desperately needs,” produced by Portland-based Social Malpractice Publishing and Container Corps Art Press.

Brad Pitt and parenting in the movies, part 2

Brad Pitt and parenting in the movies, part 2

I recently posted on THE TREE OF LIFE, the Terrence Malick lush-fest that has been blowing minds – like explosions in space – since its recent release. I wrote about the film and parenting, a subject that comes up infrequently if you Google the two terms together. After a few conversations with friends, I’d like to follow up. And yes, full disclosure, I’m a parent of two boys (7 and 2), and a filmmaker too (SMALL, BEAUTIFULLY MOVING PARTS), so both are equally relevant. (Did I just equate my love for my children to my love for movies? The parent police should be at my door momentarily.)

The Franco Lure

The Franco Lure

As we collectively come down from the Oscars, I am forced to reflect on the Franco-filled universe. I don’t want to reflect, believe me – but as you know, he’s EVERYWHERE. The New York Times this morning greeted me with a Franco cocktail. Entertainment Weekly Entertainer of the Year 2010? Check. Two oversaturation notifications on my husband’s Facebook page? (As in – check these out – it’s just too too too too too much. One of them, just to get you to click, is headlined “James Franco to Teach a Class About Himself.”) Check. And now, I am torturing myself even more … as I sit here and watch a screener of 127 HOURS. His arm just got stuck. Am I ready for all of this?

The design of 127 HOURS

The design of 127 HOURS

An interesting article on the construction of the canyon used in 127 HOURS in the which “director Danny Boyle demanded a hyper-realistic set” from the production and costume designer Suttirat Larlarb. Boyle had one criterion for the reconstructed canyons—the walls couldn’t move. While most sets have moving pieces that allow the actors and filmmakers to…

James Franco's World Domination

James Franco's World Domination

Actor James Franco attends the ‘Homework’ Premiere at the Library Center Theater during the 2011 Sundance Film Festival on January 23, 2011 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Sonia Recchia/Getty Images)
James Franco’s world domination, or at least his Where’s Waldo-like ubiquity continues unabated in Park City. Today he’s featured on a banner ad on the cover of the Salt Lake Tribune: Six Oscar Noms for 127 HOURS! (Lotta hometown pride for that film, which is set in Utah.) And even though he doesn’t have a film at Sundance, the actor-documentarian-performance-artist-PhD-student-Oscar-co-host does have, naturally, an art exhibit.
Actor James Franco (right) hosts the Playboy Party on January 21, 2011 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Tiffany Rose/WireImage)
It’s called Three’s Company: The Drama, and it is not (in the vein of his General Hospital-MOCA shenanigans) performance art. No. We were quickly corrected upon entering the New Frontier space-where dozens of multi-media, and every other kind of media (“transmedia,” “new media”) exhibits are on display-that Three’s Company is “immersive” media. As the placard on the wall outside of the installation explains: “By pulling apart the individual story elements of the show Three’s Company, and reconstituting them into a fully immersive (see?) experience, Franco allows viewers to activate the body in the act of remembering and reliving the iconic sitcom.”

The Oscars are coming! Here's some advice!

The Oscars are coming! Here's some advice!

On February 27, the annual Academy Awards telecast will attempt to make millions of people interested in movies they didn’t care enough to see in the first place.

They’ll do so with glitz, celebrity drop-ins, gushy tributes, high fashion, and the wonderful sight of four people being devastated in each category.

As an inveterate Oscar watcher despite it all, I have some handy ideas for pepping up the show and grabbing way higher ratings than they ever imagined.

Here goes, for free:

*Serve booze. The Golden Globes are always more fun than the Oscars because the guests are flat-out drunk and not that self-conscious about the evening’s high-pressure antics. The Oscars should serve tray upon tray of ratings-making cocktails. It’s a recipe for absolute hilarity!

Festival Parties: James Franco Channels Suzanne Somers

Festival Parties: James Franco Channels Suzanne Somers

James Franco’s installation at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, THREE’S COMPANY: THE DRAMA, sounds like something you have to experience firsthand to fully appreciate. In it, he seeks to examine the classic ‘70s sitcom, featuring those three kooky roomies Chrissy, Janet and Jack, by, according to the official description, “breaking out individual elements of narrative,…

Sundance Film Festival follow up: HOWL

Sundance Film Festival follow up: HOWL

Before Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman wrote and directed HOWL, they worked on several other films together, starting in the 80s with COMMON THREADS: STORIES FROM THE QUILT, a documentary about the stories behind the AIDS Memorial Quilt that won the Oscar for Best Documentary. They went onto make THE CELLULOID CLOSET, a doc about…

Three's Company for Franco

Three's Company for Franco

I love James Franco. From his hilarious cover of Candy and stint on 30 Rock to his gay roles in MILK and HOWL, he’s a straight guy (sadly enough) who is unafraid to do some pretty non-mainstream stuff. Hollywood needs more like him. News is out that James is set to star in a remake…

James Franco is a drag

James Franco is a drag

Check out these photos of (dilettante?) actor James Franco taken by Terry Richardson.

The Thing: Issue 10

The Thing: Issue 10

Remember how way back in 1991, before it got shined up and sponsored by Louis Vuitton, BMW and Hermès and spun off into two fashion glossies, Visionaire was a cool, collaborative art and design project made by hand and paid for out of pocket? While its creators may have lost some of their original DIY spirit, that energy is alive and well with the folks at The Thing, a curated quarterly in in the form of an everyday object.

Naked News: What About Prom, Bleckley?

Naked News: What About Prom, Bleckley?

What are people saying about HOWL?

What are people saying about HOWL?

Seems like James Franco has been all over the place in the last few days, talking about, among other things, HOWL, the new film by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman in which the actor stars as Beat poet Allen Ginsberg. Here he is discussing his love of poetry with Vanity Fair. There he is explaining his love of soap operas to New York magazine. Here he is defending his tendency to play roles based on himself on screen in Movieline. And there he is getting rapped for his shabby grad-school duds by old-school gossipist Cindy Adams: “His black coat was littered with light brown hair,” she sniffed in her New York Post column on Wednesday.

No good happens after 1 a.m.

No good happens after 1 a.m.

Repeat after me: no good happens after 1 a.m. WHEN WILL I LEARN??? I pinched a nerve so badly I can’t turn my neck. At all. I look like one of those freaky wooden dolls where you push a lever and their bodies and necks turn with their heads while the lips move. I am creeping myself out. That and I have a zit. Which pisses me off as my mother told me when I was 14 that I’d stop getting zits when I turned 18. But then again she also told me I could get pregnant by sitting on an unprotected toilet seat, so there you go.

Opening Night, aka who the hell wants to be sexy at Sundance?

Opening Night, aka who the hell wants to be sexy at Sundance?

Still from HOWL.

So, I’m doing my schedule for this week and at one point I was wondering if Sundance was a film or a music festival. Seriously. ASCAP has a music series with LeeAnn Rimes, Joey + Rory and the Fray, along with like 20 others. Lyle Lovett is here, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, John Legend, you name it. And I am in heaven.

The festival has finally started – slowly. By tomorrow you wont even be able to walk down Main Street without thinking horrible, dark thoughts about the couple in front of you who insists on strolling slowly down the narrow sidewalks, holding hands – and therefore holding up the foot traffic for miles. And the weather ain’t helping. Eight inches of snow dropped last night and they are expecting at least another six more tonight. Thank God for waterproof boots! Although, the amount of high heeled snow boots I’ve seen already is astonishing. I mean, seriously? Who the hell wants to be sexy at Sundance? It’s like picking up someone on the treadmill. Yech.

Trend-spotting at Sundance Film Festival 2010

Trend-spotting at Sundance Film Festival 2010

Image from HOWL

Journalists at film festivals invariably find themselves with the task of connecting the dots among dozens of disparate movies — looking for the big picture, whether in the form of a new fad or a larger cultural moment (e.g., last year’s elusive search, during a Sundance that coincided with a historic inauguration, for the quintessential Obama movie). Expect lots of trend-spotting once Sundance 2010 kicks off on Thursday night, and expect these three topics to get plenty of play: