Franco Bucket Design by Justin A. Burnett
Hard-hitting Investigative Journalism by Bob Freville
Back in January, five women came forward to accuse James Franco of sexual misconduct and inappropriate behavior. Among their allegations was the assertion that Franco, the 40-year old Hollywood actor and ever-prolific polymath behind the Oscar-nominated Disaster Artist, removed protective guards from female actors’ genitals while shooting a nude orgy scene so that he could more accurately simulate oral sex on them.
For those who have followed Franco’s bizarre career trajectory, such as his off-the-wall performance as white gangsta Alien in Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers, this probably didn’t come as much of a surprise. After all, the famously method actor deep throated a handgun and sang Britney Spears’ “Everytime” for that one.
Still, in the age of #MeToo, it is important to take sexual allegations seriously. No matter how much you loved Franco’s inspired turn as James Franco in the Seth Rogen film This is the End or his equally inspired paintings of James Franco, it doesn’t negate the fact that a man’s art never justifies his personal life.
After all, it’s not like we were okay with Woody Allen making a gajillion feature films after his 1992 sexual assault charges…right?
When the aforementioned allegations were levied against Franco, he was quick to take to television to refute them, saying, “The things that I heard that were on Twitter are not accurate. But I completely support people coming out and being able to have a voice because they didn’t have a voice for so long. So I don’t want to shut them down in any way.”
He was quick to add, “If I have done something wrong, I will fix it—I have to.”
How exactly one fixes past sexual misconduct is beyond this writer. Perhaps a man can jerk off over a slumbering ingenue and then make up for it by buying her an ice cream cone and some Gucci sandals…perhaps not.
Regardless, this is in keeping with the Franco we know or, at least, the Franco we think we know. Of course he would have to fix it. Franco has made a career of fixing things, especially those that weren’t broken to begin with. Remember his film adaptations of William Faulkner novels?
Of course you don’t.
Shit, Franco even directed a feature-length film inspired by deleted scenes from the Al Pacino classic Cruising!
And this is where the case of James Franco left this reporter very perplexed. The possibility of someone like James Franco wielding his industry power in an unprofessional or aggressive sexual manner is hardly unbelievable but for one simple fact: there is no one like James Franco.
Or is there?
As I labored over this case for the last several months, painstakingly analyzing the man’s career and personal appearances for signs of insidiousness, I found myself at a loss. The question I kept coming back to was this: How would this man find the time to sexually assault anyone?
How does a man earn 7 college degrees, study at Columbia University, study at Brooklyn College, study at NYU, study at Warren Wilson, earn a Ph.D at Yale, start his own film school, get trapped in a cave and cut off his own hand to free himself, star in 14 movies in one year while writing and directing six movies in the same year, record a full-length album, release a poetry collection, curate an ode to Rebel Without a Cause, host charitable events and teach filmmaking at New York University…and still find time to put his penis where it isn’t invited?
It’s hard to imagine Franco having much of a sex life and still harder to imagine Franco being able to achieve an erection without a paintbrush in one hand, a handheld camera in the other, a beret on his head and a long lens protruding from his eye socket.
The question then became, how does one man do all of these things simultaneously? The thought of it is maddening, not just to those who us who sit pretty on the sidelines, watching the spectacle that seems to be James Franco. It’s even more maddening for those plaintive struggling filmmakers who understand what goes into making one movie, let alone 20 at a time.
In contemplating all of this, I finally alighted on an explanation not just for Franco the Artist but for Franco the Perverted Disaster Artist and Potential Sexual Abuser.
There is more than one James Franco!
Consider this: Advances in modern technology have made it possible to clone living creatures. The National Human Genome Research Institute have been forthcoming about their successes and failures in the space of cloning. They have succeeded at cloning no less than 10 different animal species from a monkey to an unspecified number of sheep.
Somatic cell cloning has been the most successful form of cloning by far and while the Institute claims that human cloning is the stuff of fiction, a group out of South Korea has made claims of human cloning in the past.
My extensive analysis of this case has led to only one possible conclusion, one that may be too shocking for some of our readers. That conclusion is this: We are dealing with a bucketful of Francos here.
Reports suggest that James Franco the Man has a current net worth of around $30 million, but surely, a man who has starred in 149 film and TV projects must have earned more than that. The explanation is obvious—a good chunk of Franco’s earnings went to somatic cell cloning at a time when the scientific arm was still in its infancy and, therefore, affordable by Hollywood standards.
My research suggests that these cloning efforts were undertaken around 2012 when Franco developed an interest in making black-and-white movies about forgotten poets, and painting pictures of deer fucking and crotch Francos.
James Franco realized that he couldn’t possibly be in a loft painting squirrels, in a bathroom taking nude selfies for Facebook, on location starring in a stoner comedy, in a gay leather bar directing bikers in codpieces, at college teaching how to make movies good and on a beach penning whimsical poetry all at the same time.
This necessitated the need for more James Francos. Lo, the first James Franco clone was born. He was stout, curly haired, squinty-eyed and none-too-bright. But he had the same crinkly eyes and toothy grin that had made James Franco the Man a heartthrob. It seemed like it just might work.
And work it did for a time as Franco was able to make the jump from $100 million Hollywood blockbusters to a higher education at America’s most prestigious universities. Franco One could soak up 19th century decadence and the works of the great Dadaists while James Franco the Original was free to hang out with the Superbad boys.
Later, Franco the Original would cook vegan falafel and play rainy lo-fi jazz while Franco One relayed the details of automatic writing to his creator.
It all came off without a hitch until Franco the Original engineered one clone too many, even making the critical mistake of sending Franco One in for a subsequent cloning in his absence. The result was Franco Six, a deranged simpleton with super-human strength and a tendency to drool.
Franco Six wasted no time in directing the shit out of Franco the Original’s latest films and abusing the cast and crew of the same. Soon, the rampaging Franco Six knew that he was in danger of being taken out by his predecessors. His behavior was simply too erratic.
Committed to preserving his legacy, Franco Six locked himself inside the somatic cloning unit and set the cloning operation to ludicrous speed. In seconds flat, six more Francos were created, some of them hermaphroditic in nature.
These new bastard clone clones lacked the artistic chutzpah of their forebears, but what they didn’t have in talent they made up for in feral sexual depravity. Soon, the Franco Clone Clan had impregnated each other after rampant self-sodomy and the subspecies grew. In no time, they had taken to the streets of LA and escaped their creator’s past as a slave to James Franco’s will.
No one has claimed to have seen or heard from them since, but those who have were unaware that it wasn’t James Franco whose presence they were in. This may account for the allegations made earlier this year or, maybe, it doesn’t. But one thing is for sure—there are a lot of James Francos, too many to count… and too many to tame.