James Franco makes seven million dollars per movie. Yet he expects you to finance his artistic whims.
Following the example of Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas, Bret Easton Ellis and Zach Braff, James Franco has joined the crowdfunding trend by requesting 500,000 dollars to shoot ten stories from HIS OWN BOOK Palo Alto. The level of self-involvement is off the charts, as some of the rewards include a painting by James Franco, dinner with James Franco and a James Franco’s yearbook, signed by James Franco.
The trend is troublesome. Sure, without crowdsourcing, the Veronica Mars movie would be dead in the water, but Franco has advantages most filmmakers lack (Ellis and Braff get a passing grade only because their clout has diminished significantly over the years). IndieGoGo and Kickstarter are fantastic tools for wannabe artists competing for your attention in a leveled field.
Franco is basically using his sway with audiences to finance a vanity project, while protecting his personal fortune. It must be mentioned, Publishers Weekly said of Palo Alto: “The author fails to find anything remotely insightful to say in these 11 amazingly underwhelming stories.”