For years, it seemed, James Franco was on a never-ending trajectory of success. Now, it seems the actor can’t stop a downward spiral.
Following Thursday reports that the actor is poised to play Fidel Castro in a new film, anger toward James Franco boiled over once again. The makers of the indie film, Alina of Cuba, couldn’t escape criticism either.
Deadline said Thursday afternoon that James Franco’s casting earned the approval of Castro’s illegitimate daughter, Alina Fernandez. She is reportedly a consultant on the film, which is based on her story of opposing her father’s regime and defecting to Spain.
The movie is set to start production on August 15 in Colombia, according to Variety. But critics of Franco playing Castro wasted no time in expressing their anger.
James Franco Casting Sparks Outrage
Colombia-born actor John Leguizamo called for a boycott of the film shortly after news broke about James Franco’s casting.
“How is this still going on?” Leguizamo posted on Instagram. “How is Hollywood excluding us but stealing our narratives as well? No more appropriation Hollywood and streamers! Boycott! This F’d up! Plus seriously difficult story to tell without aggrandizement which would b wrong! I don’t got a prob with Franco but he ain’t Latino!”
Meanwhile, Danny Ramirez — an actor of Colombian and Mexican descent who appeared in Top Gun: Maverick — posted a much shorter tweet.
“What the f—,” the wrote atop a news headline about James Franco’s casting.
Alina of Cuba would be one of the first major roles for Franco after he became a target amid the rise of the “Me Too” movement. For many years, he was considered a “Renaissance Man” for his seemingly tireless pursuits in film, soap operas, painting, music, and writing.
But he stepped out of the public eye in early 2018 after multiple women accused him of inappropriate sexual behavior.