Even as ABC gets ready to shut down “General Hospital” and blow what’s left of its afternoon programming, the soap opera lives on. Movie star James Franco, who has recurred as a maniac art for the last two years on the show, made a documentary about his experiences. Now it’s been chosen for the Viewppoints section of the Tribeca Film Festival in April. Here’s the description:
Francophrenia (or: Don’t Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is)
Directed by Ian Olds and James Franco, written by Ian Olds and Paul Felten
(USA)—North American Premiere, Narrative
“James Franco stunned the film world when he committed to a regular gig on General Hospital, but the Oscar®-nominated actor had a clever trick up his sleeve. While shooting a key GH episode, Franco brought along a film crew. TFF award winner Ian Olds (Fixer, 2009) then repurposed Franco’s behind-the-scenes footage into an experimental psychological thriller set amid the spectacle of a celebrity’s escalating paranoia, creating a mind-bending exploration of identity.”
I have never understood Franco’s participation in General Hospital. But this should be good. And a hot, hot ticket. It may also be the only permanent record of the show in mainstream media. It’s set for cancellation this summer, to replaced by Katie Couric or a show about bowling. If you read the emails to this column, you’ll see that ABC has made a New Coke type mistake destroying their soaps. The fans are outraged, and are turning off the network. Some say they’re working out. Others are reading books. It’s a scandal.