Living with Shakespeare: Essays by Writers, Actors, and Directors
Edited by Susannah Carson
Vintage, 528 pp., $16
It should come as no surprise that the best essays in Living With Shakespeare are by the writers, not the actors and directors listed in its subtitle. Overall, though, this 500-page collection left me unfulfilled: about a quarter of the way in, I found myself craving the real thing. Why am I getting Shakespeare secondhand, I thought, when I can just go straight to the source?
You see, we put a question mark in the title because that way you will click through to find out whether The Hollywood Reporter‘s video combining scenes from Spring Breakers and HBO’s GIRLS is as great as we question it to be. But the truth is, you already know the answer. You’ve known it all along, deep down. This is obviously the best mashup you will be seeing for awhile. Honestly, they had us at “Spring Breakers meets Girls.” Enjoy.
Reading with James Franco
A little over a week ago we noticed that James Franco–currently starring in Oz: The Great and Powerful, an autobiographical look at the actor’s life as a con man who lies about his accomplishments and convinces a lot of other people to do work for him so he can take credit for it–had started reading Teddy Wayne’s tremendous book about a tween celebrity, The Love Song of Jonny Valentine. Of course, being James Franco (note to James Franco: please title your next movie that), he couldn’t just post a picture of himself reading the book, so he added a little puppet friend to help him out.
Now, half a month later, Mr. Franco may have finished the book, but his little buddy hasn’t. And now his buddy has his own buddy … a doll that looks like it came off the set of his other documentary, Kink.
Tuesday night, Stephen Colbert had a very funny segment with someone pretty famous. We’re not going to say who, because, really, does it really matter? Colbert sometimes just has those “On” nights, where all the jokes land and everyone is in the mood and the guest gets totally schooled while trying to one-up Colbert with trivia questions about the novelizations of those Peter Jackson movies that James Franco read last semester.
Damnit. Okay, fine, the guest was James Franco. BUT IT IS STILL WORTH WATCHING.
Last week, The Observer reported on a potential feud brewing between Nascar Grand Marshal James Franco and RiFF RaFF, a Texas-based rapper who had claimed that the role of Alien in Spring Breakers was originally offered to him, though he was later offered a smaller role as part of the character’s posse. Franco not only disagreed, but claimed to not have even used RiFF RaFF as a major inspiration for the part, despite striking similarities in grooming and wardrobe.
Today the artist currently under Diplo’s label and working on an album called NEON iCon responded to our requests to clarify the situation.
Reading with James Franco
We do not know how you were taught to read serious literature, but below you can educate yourselves via actor/whatever James Franco, who posted a WhoSay photo yesterday of the correct way to enjoy Teddy Wayne‘s new novel, The Love Song of Jonny Valentine, which fittingly concerns a young man trying to figure out his place in the world as a super-famous megastar.
Acting with James Franco
In Spring Breakers, James Franco has made the role of a lifetime: Alien, a gangsta white-boy townie from Florida who seduces (and in turn gets seduced by) the trio of bubble-gum co-eds turned criminals played by Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Ashley Benson, and director Harmony Korine’s wife, Rachel Korine. He’s a creepy, status-obsessed wannabe, but Franco managed to take inspiration from outside of himself anyway.
Since the beginning, rapper Riff Raff has been promoting the film, saying the Franco character was based on him. And the similarities are evident: the gold grill, the dreadlocks, the fact that one of his albums was called The Golden Alien and he and Korine appeared on a Sneeze magazine’s cover together.
All was kosher. That is, until James Franco got upset over the idea that his performance could have been done by the From Gs to Gents contestant himself.
Being James Fanco
1. Denial: According to Elle.com, Marina Abramovic is looking to make a film which explains to audiences, “‘Who is James Franco?’ and ‘Why is he doing what he’s doing?’” Haha, that is a very good question!
… Wait, this is a joke, right? Wasn’t he just involved in the documentary about HER? I’m pretty sure that’s illegal. Or at least, really gauche. Very funny, you guys.
Remember how James Franco just debuted his latest art exhibit, “Gay Town” in Berlin last week? You know. The one with that angry picture of Spider-Man. We did a whole post on it, go read it.
Apparently we weren’t the only ones to take notice of Franco’s latest “art” project, as evidenced by Peter Aspden’s overly adverb-laced interview with the actor in this weekend’s Financial Times. Franco says things “chummily,” and “out-zonks” Aspden “instantly.” There’s a whole paragraph devoted to his smile. But even the puffiest puff piece can’t save Franco from himself, like when pressed to explain his insane Spider-Man picture:
The Ouroboros of Franco
Hey ladies. You know, on this very special Valentine’s Day, you’re not looking for a dozen roses or a bear holding a box of chocolate. You’re not looking for hearts, or balloons, or even a book of homemade coupons offering “I O U = One (1) Free Massage During a Screening of Crazy, Stupid Love on Our DVD Player (Your Choice, Non-Transferable).”
No girl, what really gets your motor running (pun intended) is to have artist/actor/Grand Marshal for the Daytona 500 James Franco show you the collection for his latest installation exhibit in Berlin, “Gay Town.”