James Franco Will Play an Ex-Gay Activist

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NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 14:  James Franco visits "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" at Rockefeller Center on March 14, 2014 in New York City.  (Photo by Theo Wargo/NBC/Getty Images for "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon")
James Franco. Photo: Theo Wargo/NBC

James Franco has played plenty of gay characters onscreen, and his next project will continue that trend ... sort of. The actor will star this summer in a fact-based movie about Michael Glatze, a gay activist who leaves San Francisco, renounces his past, and comes out as an ex-gay Christian fundamentalist. "Page Six" broke the news and Vulture can add that the film, produced by Gus van Sant and directed by Justin Kelly, is based on Benoit Denizet-Lewis's buzzy 2011 New York Times article "My Ex-Gay Friend." Production will begin in July, and Franco will juggle his leading-man duties while also starring in the Broadway production of Of Mice and Men, because the boy does like to multitask.