James Franco plays gay to open Atlanta Film Fest

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Heads up, gay Atlanta. Indie darling James Franco is coming to town, and he’s bringing his Zachary Quinto three-way with him. The waves being made by “I Am Michael” are now set to crash into Atlanta Film Festival.

The 39th annual romp through Atlanta’s answer to Sundance runs March 20-29. At the kickoff screening, everyone’s winner for Most Prolific in a Gay Role (photo, with Quinto) is scheduled to be in attendance, according to the AJC.

“I Am Michael,” starring Franco as a gay journalist-activist who goes straight on his way to becoming a pastor, has snagged the prestigious opening night slot. And the festival has announced that the Oscar-nominated actor (for “127 Hours”) will appear at the 7:30 March 20 screening at the Plaza Theatre.

“I Am Michael,” with Zachary Quinto as the male love interest of Franco’s based-on-real-life character, and Emma Roberts as his female one, played to somewhat mixed notices at Sundance.

Variety’s review called it “a remarkably even-handed account of outspoken gay-rights journalist Michael Glatze’s 180-degree identity reversal … Hollywood Reporter said the film “has an intriguing, real-life premise and a marketable cast” but called the release “workmanlike.”

In any case, it seems a provocative opening night choice in a city where the gay and religious communities both stand strong.

In the film, Quinto is left high and dry by the switch-hitting Franco in the real-life story of Michael Glatze, but not before they engage in a hot threesome with Charlie Carver. Early stirrings about the film can be timed exactly with the release of a hot film still of the action. For his part, Quinto loved it.

The last time the gay-run Plaza and Franco collided was over screenings of his scandal-rocked “The Interview” over the holidays. Maybe Franco will drop a gay bombshell while here or work gay Atlanta like Joe ManganielloJake GyllenhaalHugh JackmanWilson Cruz and Vin Diesel. They’ve got nothing on Franco handling gay rumors, even when it means coming out.

“I Am Michael” opens Atlanta Film Festival with James Franco in attendance on March 20 at Plaza Theatre, 7:30 p.m. Buy tickets online.

[Atlanta Journal Constitution]


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