James Franco interviewed at Poetry Foundation on his upcoming biopic of Hart Crane:
Crane’s life was the life of the quintessential struggling artist. I mean, James Joyce, he’s a great writer, but it would be hard to make his life dramatic. You could, but it’s just not readily dramatic. I guess you could say, “Oh, well, he went to Paris and his daughter was kind of crazy and he hung out with Sylvia Beach, then the war came. . . .”
I think what James means is more like what Elizabeth Hardwick wrote, that Hart Crane was an EVENT, like Scott Fitzgerald or Sylvia (this is in her essay on Sylvia).
I think I've become exquisitively sensitive, I'm sure. To these women and how they are washed out of history. But poor Lucia Joyce. Poor Lucia Joyce institutionalized for throwing a chair. Who would intercept the phone lines congratulating her father on the Little Review victory regarding Ulysses and would shout into the phone: "I am the artist!" Poor, cross-eyed Lucia. In love with Beckett.Who studied with Madame Egorova like Zelda F.
I could say something else here, about how that casual phrase this Young Hollywood Actor tossed off is telling in terms of literary history, the notion that the madwomen in modernism really provided the sparks, the drama, in these men's lives, they sacrificed them in name of art, like Iphighenias. Except I'm not really ready yet to make grand pronouncements, I'm just like a little mouse in my little white cave of an office transcribing, transcribing, which is really regurgitating and procrastinating.
Oh, also, I'm not terribly interested what James Franco has to say about literature, modern or otherwise (at first I wrote "I'm not the least bit interested" but changed to "I'm not terribly interested" for fear of seeming too curt, the truth is I am interested, but more in a spectacle sort of way). I would find him smoking hot if he stopped speaking so much and twittering about crazy broads and the Beats. I would rather think of James Franco the Object. I think I dated a stream of dudes who resemble the stoner hotness of James Franco, however diluted - they would have copies of Nietzsche and Artaud by their bedside but wouldn't want to talk about it, it was just something they engaged with in their interior life, separated from their banging chicks life - almost always they were assholes although varied in scale in terms of the quality of their lovemaking (I want to say fucking, but feel like I write it too much, although fucking is the right word, you only fuck James Franco types, and they only fuck with you.) This kind of guys always called girls crazy, especially if they got too obsessive or got angry for any reason. I once served James Franco at Foyle's, he bought a whole shelf of Paul Auster. This is right at Spider Man but before James Franco the Author. In other words, to be that person, always, I wonder if a starlet of similar golden looks and appeal decided to become a Serious Author and Artist whether she would receive the same treatment, the same attitude towards her dilettantism? Is that even a question that could be asked? Oh, dear. I'm afraid that sounded rather Feminist, didn't it? From now on I will only spell that word with a capital F. Yes, a capital F.