By Romeo San Vicente
James Franco visits ‘The Broken Tower’
Here’s how heterosexual James Franco is: He’s played gay three and half times. First as James Dean, then as Harvey Milk’s boyfriend and soon he’ll play Allen Ginsberg. The “half” was when his stoner drug dealer character seemed very fond of Seth Rogen in “Pineapple Express.” And now the former “Freaks and Geeks”-er has gone and bought the rights to an old poem by tormented gay writer Hart Crane, who killed himself back in 1932 at the age of 32. The poem in question, “The Broken Tower,” was written by Crane after a brief attempt at heterosexual romance, one that ended badly. It’s assumed that whatever film or TV incarnation blooms from this renting of rights would star Franco. And why shouldn’t it? He’d just play a hotter version of Crane. Happens all the time. And he’s already made out with guys on screen. If it’s a vanity project then these are the kind we want to see.
Ashton Kutcher hooks up with Burroughs
All actors have their own production companies now. It’s what they do with their time and money after their restaurant closes and the good roles stop coming in. All Ashton Kutcher did was jump-start his company early in his career, even before his restaurant went out of business. And Katalyst (that’s the company name) has recently partnered with best-selling gay writer Augusten Burroughs to develop two new TV shows. One is slated as a drama about firefighters and the other is an adaptation of Burrough’s hilarious and harrowing memoir “Dry,” about his battle with alcoholism. How do you tell a story on episodic TV about a person with an ongoing substance abuse problem and keep it entertaining? Just ask the writers of the brilliantly funny “Nurse Jackie.” If all goes well, this could be the gay male version of that pitch-black comedy.
Adam Sandler will play Jack… and Jill
The only thing funnier (and more frightening) than the fake movies Adam Sandler’s character made as the mega-star with cancer in this summer’s “Funny People” (roles in which he played a talking baby and a male mermaid) are the roles he’s willing to take on in real life. Like, for instance, Jack and Jill. Meaning that he’s going to play both Jack and Jack’s twin sister Jill in a film about those two nursery rhyme characters. That’s all we have to go on right now, but it raises a lot of potentially unsettling questions. Like, will there be bizarre prosthetics involved? Digital enhancement? Freaky “White Chicks”-style makeup? Character traits borrowed from the time he starred as a straight guy pretending to be swishy gay in “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry”? A hill to climb? Pails of water fetched? A crown broken? Tumbling? Worse, Sandler’s going to make everyone wait until 2011 to find out. How will we make it through?
Taking out the ‘Girltrash’
One of Hollywood’s coolest behind-the-camera lesbians, Angela Robinson (“Herbie Reloaded,” “D.E.B.S.”), created a web series called “Girltrash!” a while back. Starring Amber Benson, Margaret Cho, Gabrielle Christian and “L Word” star Rose Rollins, it was a darkly sexy L.A.-based story about underworld women who’d do just about anything. And now comes word that an independent film version is about to start shooting. The only confirmed cast member to make the Internet-to-big-screen transition is musician Lisa Rieffel and “at least one person from “L Word,”” but the veil of secrecy will no doubt soon be lifted. And it can’t come too soon, because now that Kate Moennig has morphed into a long-haired, lipstick-wearing doctor for the CBS drama “Three Rivers,” Romeo is missing his bad-girl-on-bad-girl action more than ever.