James Franco to get cooked up for Comedy Central roast

James Franco can currently be seen on the big screen as a party-happy survivor of the apocalypse in the hit comedy “This Is the End.”

But the actor-writer-producer is about to face his own comic apocalypse: Franco will be on the hot seat on Labor Day for Comedy Central’s annual roast. The special, which will tape in Los Angeles in August, will feature stars, comedians and others taking humorous, sharp-edged aim at Franco.

“If only James Franco was a more successful, multi-hyphenated incessant creative risk-taker in different media, he’d be the perfect person to roast,” said Kent Alterman, president of content development and original programming for Comedy Central. “Oh well ... I suppose we’ll just have to make do.”

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Said Franco: “I’ve dreamed about this Roast for as long as I can remember.”


Franco at first glance seems an unlikely choice for a Comedy Central roast, which tend to be no-holds-barred and comedically vicious. He shares little in common with previous roastees such as Charlie Sheen, Roseanne, Donald Trump, Pamela Anderson and William Shatner, who all have more than their share of embarrassing moments on-and off-screen that are perfect comic fodder.

With the exception of his disastrous hosting stint at the 2011 Oscars, Franco’s missteps have been few, while many of his films, including “127 Hours,” “Pineapple Express” and “Spring Breakers,” have bounced between quality and quirky.

But one reason for the roast may be synergy: Franco’s documentary “Francophrenia” will debut on Comedy Central’s digital and VOD platforms following the broadcast of the roast.

But it’s almost certain that some of his famous pals, including Seth Rogen, will be among the roasters on the dais.


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