James Franco has flirted with sexuality throughout in his career -- from posing on the cover of Candy, a transsexual style magazine, to playing gay poet Allen Ginsberg in Howl, and performing a graphic gay sex scene in The Broken Tower -- but for his latest project, James is dabbling in dudes like never before.
Indiewire reports that James has not only teamed with gay art-porn director Travis Mathews for a loose remake of Al Pacino's 1980 gay murder mystery Cruising, but that the two-week shoot has already wrapped, with a first cut already in the can -- and that cut depicts graphic gay sex scenes.
Mathews tells the site that Franco's original plan was to remake Cruising, but couldn't get the rights, so they decided to focus on 40 explicit minutes that were cut from the original film in order to get the MPAA to reduce the film's rating from X to R.
"[James] knew he wanted real gay sex in it," Travis said. "His people went looking for a filmmaker who had filmed real gay sex, and I suspect someone who would complement his vision. We talked about why we would be interested in still looking at this film. We talked about his interest in the film and his interest more broadly in so many gay-themed stories and visionairies."
An installation version of the footage, which takes a cue from John Cameron Mitchell's 2006 Shortbus in portraying real, graphic sex scenes, will play at a gallery group show beginning on September 12 while Mathews hopes to debut the final cut in early 2013.
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- James Franco