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James Franco's metamorphosis into the title role of the TNT biopic James Dean earned him career-making reviews, as well as a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Motion Picture made for Television. He also received nominations for an Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Award for this memorable performance. Franco earned an Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead as well as nominations for an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award and recognition from numerous critics' associations for his starring role in Danny Boyle's critically acclaimed drama 127 Hours. His performance alongside Sean Penn in Gus Van Sant's Milk earned an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actor and he was nominated for a Golden Globe for his role in David Gordon Green's comedy Pineapple Express where he starred opposite Seth Rogen. He is also known for his starring role as Harry Osbourne in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy.
Franco was most recently seen starring opposite Danny McBride and Natalie Portman in David Gordon Green's comedy Your Highness. He also recently starred as famous poet Allen Ginsberg in Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman's Howl, Ryan Murphy's Eat, Pray, Love alongside Julia Roberts and was a part of an all-star ensemble cast in Shawn Levy's comedy Date Night. He will next be seen in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the newest take on the Planet Of The Apes franchise, and will begin production on Sam Raimi's OZ: The Great and The Powerful this year.
Franco's additional credits include George C. Wolfe's Nights in Rodanthe; Paul Haggis' In the Valley of Elah; Karen Moncrieff's ensemble drama The Dead Girl; Tommy O'Haver's drama An American Crime; John Dahl's The Great Raid; Robert Altman's The Company; as well as City by the Sea opposite Robert DeNiro and the Martin Scorsese produced Deuces Wild. On television, he starred in the critically acclaimed series Freaks and Geeks.
He wrote, directed and starred in the features Good Time Max and The Ape. Herbert White, a short film in which he wrote and directed starring Michael Shannon, debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in 2010. The Feast of Stephen, also written and directed by Franco, premiered and won a TEDDY award at the Berlin Film Festival. Additionally, Franco directed Saturday Night, a documentary on the week-long production of a "Saturday Night Live" episode, which originally premiered at SXSW and The Clerks Tale, which premiered at Cannes. Franco recently wrote and directed a biography on poet Hart Crane called The Broken Tower which will premiere at the 2011 Los Angeles Film Festival.