Franco is The Talk of The Town


James Franco’s pseudo-hipster pretentiousness art project–including his gigs on General Hospital–made the Talk of the Town section of this week’s New Yorker Magazine. Among the titbits:

Several hours before taping began, Franco, in a neatly pressed tuxedo, with slicked-back hair, a dull pancake-makeup glow, and a glaze of coffee on his teeth, sat in a director’s chair, trying to explain. Asked about the layers of performance, he said, “It’s kind of hard to tease ’em all out.” He took a sip of coffee, and said it all began with “Erased James Franco,” a conceptual film piece he’d made, two years ago, with an artist called Carter, in which Franco had re-created performances from his feature films. He and Carter talked about making another movie, in which he would play a character who is an actor on a soap opera. “I said, ‘What if I really did that? Wouldn’t that be interesting?’ ” Franco said. “My manager represents Steve Burton”—the Mafia hit man on “General Hospital”—“and we called them and said I’d like to be on the show. They were very happy. They said, ‘You can do anything—what kind of part would you like to play?’ I wanted their full treatment, so all I said was that I wanted to be an artist and I wanted my character to be crazy.” He took another swig of coffee and shifted about elegantly in his chair. “They asked if they could call the character Franco—that was their idea. It was a beautiful idea.”

Not one to be left out of art storylines (ugh) or primetime-poaching, Y&R commander-in-chief Maria Arena Bell was also mentioned, as well as designer Jeremy Scott who taped an appearance on the No. 1 rated soap:

“I’m also playing myself on a soap,” [designer, Jeremy Scott] said. “I’ll be on ‘The Young and the Restless’ on July 13th. It’s the No. 1 soap, of course.”

Downstairs on the plaza, Maria Bell, a MOCA trustee and the head writer and co-executive producer of “The Young and the Restless,” had arrived. “I’ve had many art-world people on my show,” she said. “There’s a rich billionaire who falls in love with a young curator. When the curator is killed, the billionaire smashes Damien Hirst’s shark tank—Damien, who’s a friend, gave us permission to reproduce it—but he doesn’t die of formaldehyde poisoning, as you would in real life. That’s the magic of soap!”

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