James Franco Talks About The Pineapple Express
by Alex Billington
April 23, 2007
The latest stoner movie of sorts (besides last year's Tenacious D: The Pick of Destiny and the upcoming independent release Smiley Face) is one currently filming called The Pineapple Express being directed by typically dramatic independent director David Gordon Green.
What makes this interesting, besides a hilarious plot, is that it was written by Knocked Up's lead and comedic force Seth Rogen and is being produced by (meaning being taken under the wing of) Hollywood's comedy powerhouse producer Judd Apatow, who also directed Knocked Up. James Franco, who stars in The Pineapple Express as well as the upcoming Spider-Man 3, updated us while promoting Spider-Man with the latest on the project, which is currently filming.
The plot description says the movie follows a pair of toking buddies who get mixed up with a drug gang. When asked about the "stoner" elements of the film, Franco discussed his character and Seth's and that the film is split in two pieces: the first half being a stoner movie, the second being an all-out action movie.
"Part of the humor is that you have two characters, I play a low level pot dealer and Seth is my client. It's two characters that are completely unequipped for much of anything, especially battling heavily armed bad guys, and it suddenly switched to this action film, and the action is done in a very realistic way, and that's I guess part of the humor."
James provided heaps of praise for the project, which he said he wouldn't have even taken on if it weren't for being hilarious.
"I wanted to do a comedy for a while, it's just that it's hard to find a comedy that I think is good, and that I don't feel like I'm making a jackass out of myself for no reason when it's not even funny. And I feel like [Judd] Apatow is making some of the funniest movies around."
James also talks about working with director David Gordon Green and how great he and Apatow are in working together.
"David is fantastic, obviously he comes from the independent world and this is a much larger film than he's done before. He fits right in to the Apatow family. The working process that Judd has developed for his films is to allow for a lot of improvisation. There's a script but then… I think on Knocked Up they used more than a million feet of film, so that shows that they just let every take roll out. Because they're just improvising and trying so many things. And that's really how I think David worked on a lot of his films, although he didn't have the money to afford all that film that Judd used, he gets actors and non-actors and goes off script and allows them to just bring so much of themselves to it. I mean sometimes he'll just say, well just tell a story about this thing in your life. That's how his movies have achieved that very realistic slice of life, quality. And so it's working very well for this movie."
I've got a feeling this is going to be a huge sleeper hit whenever it finally comes out in 2008. We'll keep you updated on the project as it develops and notify you the moment a trailer or teaser or photos are released.