James Franco is everywhere these days and up next he’ll star in Gia Coppola’s acclaimed debut feature film Palo Alto. The film screened last year in the Venice, Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals and is based on several linked stories in James Franco’s book of the same name. The story, a James Franco and Rabbit Bandini Productions presentation, chronicles the complicated ties and heightened emotions among a group of high school students.
Shy, sensitive April (Emma Roberts) is a popular soccer player and frequent babysitter for her single-dad coach, Mr. B. (James Franco). Teddy (played by Jack Kilmer) is an introspective artist whose best friend and sidekick Fred (Nat Wolff) is an unpredictable live wire with few filters or boundaries. While April negotiates a dangerous affair with Mr. B., and Teddy performs community service for a DUI — secretly carrying a torch for April, who may or may not share his affection — Fred seduces Emily (Zoe Levin), a promiscuous loner who seeks validation through sexual encounters. One high school party bleeds into another as April and Teddy finally acknowledge their mutual affection, and Fred’s escalating recklessness spirals into chaos.
The edgy and provocative drama stars James Franco, Emma Roberts, Jack Kilmer, Nat Wolff, Zoe Levin, Chris Messina as well as Val Kilmer. Tribeca Film has slated Palo Alto for release exclusively in theaters in New York and Los Angeles on Friday, May 9th with a national release to follow.