I saw a play James Franco directed. Below is an excerpt from his director’s note:
I wanted to do a multi-media piece that simultaneously used live actors and cameras with closed circuit projections. We live on screens, we think within screens, our lives are videos, movies and images: how better to capture this phenomenon than showing the apparatus alongside the players. … We cast almost entirely from the School of Theatre so that the actors were not age appropriate for the parts, in this way we could foreground the performative aspect of the project while at the same time utilizing and framing the passion and energy that is unique to youth. This approach strips away character so that we are interacting with the actors as people rather than the facades of their characters.
This show is all about artifice and about stripping away artifice at the same time. Young (Tennessee) Williams filled his play with dreamers, artists and lovers propelled and often destroyed by their relationships with reality: they want to love and be loved on earth and they also want to disappear into their dreams. And this is a description of acting: functioning in imaginary worlds in order to connect with audiences in the real world.
This is my favorite kind of project: a clusterfuck of different artists, personalities, and mediums. Everyone played their role (actors and non-actors) perfectly.
- James Franco, December 2012