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James Franco Collaborates With Gus Van Sant For Art Exhibit

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This is a big year for James Franco and it looks like it just got bigger.

First he made a splash in the Oscar film race, then he hopped on board to host it, but now the actor is making a splash in the art world too!

Gagosian Gallery in El Lay has announced an exhibition, going by the named Unfinished, by Gus Van Sant and James Franco set to run from February 26th until April 9, 2011.

The collaboration between the director and actor features two films, Endless Idaho and My Own Private River, which Franco edited together using unseen footage from Van Sants 1991 film My Own Private Idaho starring Keanu Reeves and River Phoenix.

According to a press release:

For Endless Idaho, Franco edited outtakes, deleted scenes, alternate takes, and behind-the-scenes footage from My Own Private Idaho into a 12-hour film. Endless Idaho provides an unprecedented look into the workaday process of making a movie, from location scouting to repeated takes. Like many of the films of Andy Warhol, a major influence on Van Sant's own auteur style, it is a provocative, often riveting blend of documentary and fiction. Interviews with actual hustlers who played secondary characters in My Own Private Idaho are intercut with shots of River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves improvising and refining their performances under the direction of Van Sant and his crew. The music for Endless Idaho was composed by Luke Paquin and Tim O'Keefe. By contrast, My Own Private River consists largely of shots of Phoenix 's character, Mike, woven into a compelling portrait. Franco describes being mesmerized by Phoenix 's "uninhibited acting" in this unreleased footage, and his edit captures the gifted actor at his most emotionally expressive and physically dynamic. The score is by Michael Stipe, who is an art school drop-out.

Don't worry, Gus made something for the exhibit too! The press release continues:

"The films are accompanied by eight works on paper by Van Sant, which translate his acute directorial sensitivity with regard to human nuance and gesture in film into the immediacy of watercolor. With the same subtle powers of observation that distinguish his filmmaking, he has created portraits of young men who recall characters in My Own Private Idaho — defiant, circumspect, and devil-may-care insouciants. Working from photographic images found on the internet, Van Sant has created vivid impressions of his incidental icons, employing brushwork that alternates broad, limpid strokes with an assiduous attention to detail and a varied palette of both washed out tones and dense, electric hues."

Inneresting.

If we ever have an extra 12 hours laying around, we might have to check this out one of these days.

Thoughts???

[Image via WENN.]

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One comment to “James Franco Collaborates With Gus Van Sant For Art Exhibit”



  1. 1

    Appalling that Gus Van Sant is still making money off of River Phoenix. His failure to step up and intervene when witnessing (some even say participating in) River's initial drug experimentation in the name of "research" for "My own private Idaho" was likely what allowed the young actor to spiral into his untimely death. He should remove his name from anything River-related and donate any revenue to charity. Shameful and gross.