James Franco is taking Wiseau’s The Room (2003) to a new level, as he will direct and star in The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room. The movie is based on a book that focuses on Greg Sestero’s behind-the-scenes relationship with Wiseau. Franco revealed through an Instagram post that his brother, Dave Franco (Neighbors) will now be joining him in the movie. Dave will most likely dramatize Greg Sestero, while James will probably play Wiseau.
The Room has often been labeled, “so bad it’s good” and is considered a cult classic for being hysterically terrible. Followers of the film have gone as far as establishing a traditional way of watching it: they even bring their own plastic spoons to throw at the screens. Franco (This Is the End, Pineapple Express) is no newcomer to comedy. This is also not his first stab at directing; his adaptation of William Faulkner’s book, As I Lay Dying (2013) scored pretty well when it opened in theaters.
Franco recently bought the rights to The Disaster Artist, Sestero and journalist Tom Bissell’s book, which explains the outlandish details related to The Room’s production. You may recognize Sestero’s name, as he was the actor who played Johnny’s untrustworthy best friend in The Room. Actor, writer, and director of The Room, Wiseau’s style is so unusual, that it should be fun to see the Franco brothers’ take.
Franco wrote a review for Vice when The Disaster Artist was published in which he compared The Room’s insider stories with other classics, including The Master (2012), Boogie Nights (1997), and Sunset Boulevard (1950). Additionally, his description of Wiseau’s style proves his interest in investing in this filmmaker’s story: “Tommy Wiseau is undoubtedly a ‘character,’ a mysterious, self-made man whose origins and age are unknown, who somehow has enough money to spend 6 million dollars making and promoting his own film, buying all the equipment in the process. He looks like he is from Bram Stoker’s Transylvania: ageless, muscled, sweet, and scary; he is part vampire, part Hollywood dreamer, part gangster, part Ed Wood, and super lonely.”
Although the film is in the early stages of production, The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room has Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg on board as co-producers. They have both previously worked with Franco on This Is the End (2013). Additionally, Ryan Moody is set to write the script for this adaptation of Sestero’s experience on set with Wiseau. Sestero’s book may have the potential to be reworked, similarly to Tim Burton’s Ed Wood (1944), which won two Oscars and examined the production of Ed Wood’s awful films.
We look forward to seeing the trajectory of Franco’s film, as he continues to grow The Room’s large fan base and create heightened stages of excitement.