From directing a rap music video to hosting a party during the apacalpyse, James Franco is at it again! Palo Alto Stories is the ‘trifecta’ of individual films based on the high school experiences outlined in the multi-faceted star’s book, Palo Alto. Because his estimated net worth of over $20 million isn’t ample enough to fund this project, the Oscar nominee is attempting to raise $500,000 using the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo.
On the campaign’s page, he eloquently writes, “Over the past 3 years I have directed and produced 6 feature films. I’ve also begun dedicating much of my time to teaching. Giving new filmmakers the opportunity to direct and produce films has become one of my greatest passions.” Franco has hired his “favorite directors at NYU,” Nina Ljeti, Bruce Thierry Cheung and Gabriel Demeestere to direct these three films, entitled Memoria, Killing Animals, and Yosemite. Keeping with these altruistic pursuits, Franco will donate all the profits from his film series to the charity organization, Art of Elysium.
With 30 days left in the campaign, Franco has raised $22,070 of his goal. Through crowdfunding, benefactors are enticed to give the millionaire their money with “exciting rewards.” So far, one lucky lad has donated $50 to receive a Special Edition art postcard of one of Franco’s Palo Alto paintings. But why stop there? For $7,000, a fortuitous fan will have the “rare opportunity” to own one of the three original Palo Alto-inspired paintings by Franco. Alternatively, they could take a picture of the mural he painted in honor of This Is The End on a brick wall in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. But obviously, the choice is clear: The ultimate prize is an executive producer position and, wait for it… a VIP dinner. Since lodging and transportation will be provided, this implies Franco will use your $10,000 donation to fly you first class, put you up in the swankiest hotel in LA, and wine and dine you at Urasawa in Beverly Hills (think $1,111 sushi bill).
For aspiring actors who believe their money is better spent paying for a role than acting lessons, Franco can guarantee your ticket to stardom with a $5,000 donation per line. If being on camera makes you nervous (after all, we can’t all be Oz The Great And Powerful), then pay half that much to “live the experience” of being on a film set where you can actually meet Franco in person. Because, let’s be real, not everyone will be lucky enough to join his crime ring during a Spring Break vacation.