James Franco doesn’t want to live in a world that would make a Spring Breakers sequel, and not just because James Franco won’t be in it. Franco released his statement last night on the forthcoming film on the only media outlet that doubles as reality itself—Instagram—along with a picture of himself in sunglasses and a Iggy Pop shirt, for reasons that went unexplained. (Because James Franco doesn’t have to explain himself to you.) Here’s what he had to say about Spring Breakers 2, which is being written by Irvine Welsh and directed by Jonas Akerlund:
“STATEMENT ABOUT SPRING BREAKERS 2: This is not being done with Harmony Korine or my consent. The original was wholly Harmony’s creation and these producers are capitalizing on that innovative film to make money on a weak sequel. I want everyone to know that whoever is involved in the sequel is jumping on board a poison ship. It will be a terrible film, with a horrible reason d’être: to make money off someone else’s creativity. Can you imagine someone making the sequel to “Taxi Driver” without Scorcese and DeNiro’s consents? Insanity! I’m speaking up for Harmony and his original vision and for any creative person who cares about preserving artistic integrity.”
Franco then went on to plug his newest performance piece, a damning statement on the exploitation of artists by the Hollywood system, wherein he takes a dump on a paperback copy of Trainspotting.
UPDATE: James Franco’s comments have caught the attention of producers Chris and Roberta Hanley, who have rebutted in Variety that screenwriter Welsh and director Akerlund “aren’t weak artists” and “our track record speaks for itself.” They also claim that the new movie will be a “fresh take” on the idea, saying, “We had a great relationship with Harmony Korine and now we’re exploring a new incarnation of Spring Breakers.”
Even more pointedly, Chris Hanley calls Franco a “hypocrite,” noting his involvement with other franchise extensions like Oz The Great And Powerful (or as Hanley calls it, “The Great And Mighty Oz”), Spider-Man, and Planet Of The Apes. He also adds of Franco, “And he’s pushing hard to help set up the Pineapple Express sequel. I guess he thinks only ‘too big to fail studio films’ are the artistically valid ventures.”