James Franco is really earning that foothold in the LGBT community. It seems like only yesterday the prolific actor was gender-bending his way onto the cover of Candy. Every career move since has been another wink at the gays, whether he’s taking on the role of Robert Mapplethorpe or baring his ass for Flaunt magazine.
Franco’s latest project, his NYU thesis film The Broken Tower (to be screened April 27 at the IFC Center), looks back at the tragic life of 20th-century American poet Hart Crane. Franco directed, wrote, and stars in the movie, which details Crane’s alcoholism and his time spent picking up sailors at New York’s notorious docks while concealing his sexual identity from his family, culminating with his suicide at the age of 32. Not exactly uplifting material, but you have to admire Franco’s commitment to becoming this generation’s gay heartthrob.