James Franco’s next filmmaking project, Zeroville, began its journey back in 2011 when the director-actor-writer-poet-artist optioned the rights to Steve Erickson’s novel. Alas, with so many ventures cluttering Franco’s plate it’s easy to see how this zany caper hasn’t received much notice. That is until today, as Screen Daily has learned that the film has already begun shooting – and there’s a ton of big names attached.
In addition to the main man himself nabbing a starring role, Seth Rogen, Jacki Weaver, Megan Fox, Will Ferrell, Danny McBride, Dave Franco, Craig Robinson, Joey King and Horatio Sanz have also signed on to star. The basic premise revolves around a film nerd who relocates to Hollywood in the 1960s to be closer to the ‘biz. However, he “enters a world of sex, drugs, rock and roll, the decline of the movie studios and the rise of independent renegade directors. Through encounters with former starlets, burglars, political guerrillas, punk musicians and veteran filmmakers he dives into the ‘renegade America of the ’70s and ‘80s’.”
It all sounds positively Franco-esque. But who’s playing who? There’s a smorgasbord of nutty opportunities here for debauchery! Well, we know that the bespectacled nerd will be played by Franco himself. Fox is set to tackle a femme fatale role, Rogen’s character “Viking Man” will be a massive hippie, Weaver will be a film director and McBride will do what McBride does best. He’s playing a sinister financier.
The entire project sounds bonkers, and if Franco’s past creations are anything to go on, it’ll probably be precisely that.
We’ll keep you posted when we hear more information on Zeroville, but in the meantime, check out the book synopsis below and head over to James Franco’s Twitter for daily photo updates from the set.
Zeroville is a unique love letter to film. It centers on the story of Vikar, a young architecture student so enthralled with the movies that his friends call him “cinéautistic.” With an intensely religious childhood behind him, and tattoos of Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift on his head, he arrives in Hollywood where he’s mistaken for a member of the Charles Manson “family” and eventually scores a job as a film editor. Vikar discovers the frames of a secret film within the reels of every movie ever made, and sets about splicing them together—an undertaking that takes on frightening theological dimensions.