James Franco in Talks to Helm ESPN Origins Story 'Those Guys Have All the Fun'

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James Franco

The project is based on the 2011 book by James Andrew Miller and Tom Shales, which offered an exhaustive chronicle of the birth of the now ubiquitous sports network.

James Franco is in negotiations to direct Those Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN at Focus Features, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.

The project is based on the 2011 book of the same name by James Andrew Miller and Tom Shales, which offered an exhaustive chronicle of the birth of the now-ubiquitous sports network, told through some 500 interviews with current and former staffers.

Although Franco sometimes appears in the movies he helms, he is not expected to take a role in Those Guys Have All the Fun.

Franco, who has stayed just as busy as a director as an actor in recent years, starred in and produced the critically acclaimed 2017 film The Disaster Artist. He had been quiet on the deals front of late, as he faced allegations of sexual misconduct that were reported by the Los Angeles Times, charges he denied.

Although Franco is readying the second season of his HBO series The Deuce, a period look at the porn industry, Those Guys Have All the Fun would mark his first high-profile deal since he was swept up in the #MeToo movement and would bode well for his future career prospects, which seemed shaky just months ago when he was snubbed for a best actor Oscar nomination.

Franco is repped by UTA. Anonymous Content and Sloane Offer.

Collider first reported the news of Franco's negotiations.