With the upcoming UK release of the Disaster Artist, the true story of actor-writer-director Tommy Wiseau and the making of The Room, often considered one of the worst pictures ever made, it’s lead actor and director James Franco recently spoke to The Hollywood Reporter of how he approached the oft lampooned and eccentric Wiseau at the beginning of the project;
“I talked to him first on the phone, I had to get his life rights. And I was a little worried. He wasn’t very good at listening. I knew I wanted to play the part, and my brother play the other part. But I didn’t know how Tommy would feel about that. And then finally, he’s just like [imitating him], ‘So who play me?’ And I didn’t want to say me, in case he didn’t like that idea. I didn’t have the contract yet. And I was like, ‘I don’t know, Tommy, who do you think?’ And he’s like, ‘Well, how about Johnny Depp?’”
Franco also spoke briefly of an upcoming project rumoured to be based on the Marvel Comics character Multiple Man which is set in the X-Men Universe. The actor was suitably vague but did hint that the movie may well be heading for an R-rated audience, a move which has recently brought financial success for 20th Century Fox.
“I do have a superhero that I am developing,” said Franco. “I don’t know how much I can say but I will say I am producing and performing in it. It’s early stages. I think probably what I can say is, like anything, there’s a need to develop more.”
Noting that he’s “developing all kinds of movies” through Ramona Films, the company he’s created with his brother, actor Dave Franco, he added;
“Our bottom line MO is, how can we push this into new ground? A little bit, but still make it entertaining? [But] what I love about what Simon Kinberg and Fox and the X-Men people have done with Deadpool and Logan — it took a while to get there, maybe 10 years — but they are going to go hard R. And we’re going to take this superhero thing and really just push it into a new genre. So we’re working with Simon Kinberg on an X-Men property.”
Franco is no stranger to the world of comic book adaptations after playing Harry Osbourne in Sam Rami’s Spider-Man Trilogy and it seems he’s very enthusiastic of the idea of returning to the genre.
The Disaster Artist is released in the U.K. December 6th and the US December 8th.