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« Our Column in the 10/6 Issue of Soap Opera Digest | Main | "Unfortunately, a brain is not a foot." »

October 01, 2009

James Franco heads to GH, and Our Heads Explode in 50 Different Ways

1. This morning, I got an email from news correspondent Beth R. saying that James Franco would be joining General Hospital.

2. Thinking I must have misread it, I leaned into take a closer look at my computer monitor.

3. It still said that James Franco would be joining General Hospital.

4. James Franco, the movie star.


5. General Hospital, the piece of crap airing at 3 PM on ABC.

6. I then asked, "My James Franco?"

7. (Yes, I said that. Out loud. Do not judge me, for I already judge myself)

8. Because James Franco is...I love him. In a completely healthy, non-stalky way.

9. Okay, it is kind of stalky.

10. But he was Daniel Desario! And he was so good in Milk! And AMAZING in Pineapple Express. And he's so pretty! And so talented!

11. I own many of his movies.

12. Okay, most of his movies.

13. I even paid real, US money to see Nights in Rodanthe, and he's not even credited in that!

14. And I still have the issue of GQ with him on the cover from last year, even though I am 26 years old and should be well beyond things like that.

15. The point of this embarrassing overshare is that I am a James Franco fangirl.

16. The only person who I think makes me more hysterical is Leonardo DiCaprio.

17. And if I got an email saying that Leo was going to be doing a stint on one of my soaps, I'd probably need to be sedated.

18. (I also would hope that he would at least hold out for The Young and the Restless!)

19. I was speechless, to say the least, unless hysterical, high-pitched laughter counts as speech, and I'm pretty sure it doesn't.

20. This has been the week of me being speechless: first from Ryan and Erica Ryan and Ericaing, and then Jonathan Jackson returning to GH and now this.

21. The people within hearing distance of me are the biggest beneficiaries of these soap happenings.

22. Still reeling from the news, I went to the bank.

23. Not to take out a large sum of money to finance a trip to Los Angeles and the GH set specifically.

24. Really, that's not why.

25. And while I waited, I checked for official confirmation of this, the biggest soap news of all time, on SOAPNet.com

26. And there was confirmation.

27. And I made a sound that was part gasp, part muffled scream and part laughter.

28. The bank teller then leaned across the counter and studied my eyes intently.

29. I am pretty sure this was to check the size of my pupils to see if I was on the drugs.

30. When my transaction finished, I practically sprinted back to the car and did something akin to this


30. I then called my best friend and left her the most rambling, hysterical voicemail of all time. I'm not even sure it was in English. It was lots of "Ohmigod"s and "Eeeeee!!!" and the occasional confused, "And I don't know why!"

31. And as I drove home, obeying the speed limit

32. (Well, it was a speed limit somewhere)

33. It hit me:

33. I never criticize anything that James Franco does.

34. He's been in some movies that others may describe as "terrible", but I always defend them.

35. (Sometimes the only defense I can muster is "Whatever, suck it", but that usually ends the argument!)

36. Does this mean that I will start to defend General Hospital?

37. And defend a story that's heavy on Jason, at that?

He'll be playing a mysterious character -- the details are too hot to share now -- who will interact with most of Port Charles and in particular, make Jason's life a living hell. Expect James to start airing on November 20th and he'll appear on the show for multiple weeks.

38. I think it does, because Becca sent me an email with the subject "What is James Franco thinking?" and my immediate response was "That he's awesome, duh".

39. It's a completely involuntary reaction!

40. I am having terrifying visions of a future where I am compelled to say things like, "I can't wait for General Hospital to come on!" or "GH should totally submit this on their Emmy reel next year for Outstanding Daytime Drama and I will totally campaign on their behalf".

41. And HE approached GH!

The coolest part about this? James approached General Hospital about joining the cast.

42. Which, at least GH doesn't have the balls to approach an award-winning movie actor about doing a stint on their show, so their ego isn't completely out of control.

43. Also..James Franco is short (EDIT: Just to clarify, he's not tiny, but it's said that he's 5'10, which means he's probably an inch or two shorter than that, and I am a giant so I consider most people short).

44. If he is in a scene with Maurice Benard and they are roughly the same height--or, heaven forbid, MB is taller--this will mean that I need to forfeit "Sonny is a shorty" jokes for the rest of eternity.

45. Which is totally disappointing, because those are some of my favorite Sonny jokes to make!

46. Although we'll at least always have the Duh Face.

47. And now I am left to impatiently wait for his scenes to air and gear myself up for two possibilities:

48. The show will continue to be terrible and I will be forced to defend said terrible show, have to watch Jason scenes IN THEIR ENTIRETY WITHOUT FAST FORWARDING and will possibly have to give up my arsenal of wee Sonny jokes.

49. Or he will be the recipient of the best, most engaging writing in years and his guest stint will be, overall, genuinely fantastic.

50. OR--I don't count this as a possibility, since it's more of a probability--I will wind up not being able to focus on any of his scenes at all due to the nervous, hysterical laughter I burst into whenever I hear or see the words "James Franco on General Hospital". Because REALLY, I cannot stop laughing.


Good Lord! What is he thinking?

He had to have lost a bet....had to. Or the stuff on Pineapple Express wasn't a prop and dude fried his mind.

Offial word is he's doing research for a movie....so we are totally getting SoapDish 2 aren't we?

I find with this and JJ returning, GH wants to make me squee.

But they have not. They have just MELTED MY BRAIN.

Can we stage an intervention?

First I lose Jordan Catalano to his Jared Letoness. And now I'm going to lose Daniel Desario to GH. I'm not sure that I can take this.

Seriously, did he lose a bet or something? Does he have weekly poker games that include Brian Frons and the stakes got a little high? Why? WHY?? I'm sorry, all afternoon long, I've been asking this question in a very, shrilly, Carly-esque voice and that alone is enough to make me question my own sanity. But...WHY?!?!

Why did James Franco have to choose GH? Now, I will have to watch GH without FF through most of the show. I'm not supprised that he's working with Steve. I love that his character is going to make Jason's life a living hell, that's always entertaining.

Does mean they'll have to update the opening sequence? Cause, you know, it is a big-time star they have coming to the show. That might happen, right? Right?

I just... do not get it. Why on earth would James Franco want to be on GH? What could he possibly be researching? I fear for his sanity.

If TPTB think this is going to get me to tune back in, they can guess again. It doesn't matter how many people return or what big movie stars sign on: this effing show still effing sucks!

I've been waiting for this post all day. I had the same crazy combo of squealing and laughing and hyperventalating when I heard the news this morning.

I'm go back and forth between "WTF?!!!" and "Thank you Soap Operal Gods!!!"

JJ and JF? I'm gonna plotz.

I feel like he and Seth Rogen had some sort of epic stoned dare off and this was the end result.

In all honesty, I think it's pretty cool. He's only taping for three days, so he won't be on very many episodes (streeeeeetched out over several weeks), so we don't have to worry about him catching GH rabies. Sounds like he's doing it for fun.

I bet it'll inject some life into some of those sleepier cast members who *can* act but just usually don't bother.

Also, slurp!

# 13 Don't feel too bad about paying real US $ for Nights in Rodanthe. Our local currency ain't what it used to be.

# 44 Even if JF is somehow the same height or shockingly a bit shorter Sonny will always be a mental midget!!!! Let the jokes flow. There's more than enough material there honey.

Beth R......I loved that movie. It's no Sophie's Choice, but come on, it wasn't trying to be. It was good and silly and had some seriously great performances by some of the best actors ever :-) It was hilarious. I have always thought Cathy Moriarty's character was dedicated to Sarah Brown and how I loathed Carly OG.

As if the GV, JJ, and JF announcements weren't enough to boost GH chatter. There has been direct twitter confirmation through VM's BFF- Jillian the screaming trainer from Biggest Loser-that Vanessa Marcil is indeed open to coming back to PC while JF is there. It appears they share an agent or something, I don't know if it goes beyond that or not.

You know what really pisses me off about all of this, Guza and Frons are probably enjoying all kinds of praise for this as well as getting off on it which makes me feel dirty!


PS Sarah Brown is on set w/ a 2 year contract @ the B&B today. GH even let her out early of her ABC contract so she could sign up w/ Brad Bell. Clic 2 :-0

Sarah- please don't misunderstand. Soapdish is one of the best movies EVER. You have no idea how many times a day I explain to someone that "you can't come back from decapitation." I would not object in anyway shape or form to having a Soapdish 2. Especailly if Robert Downey Junior would reprise his role!

And Sarah you hit the nail on the head with what is bugging me the most. ALL the chatter the Casting Change Olympics caused this week...well GH got a lot of attention for something other than how CRAPTASTIC they are. And they are just lapping it up. All this talk did was just buy another couple months of job security for these idiots and WE DID IT! GAH!

I need to go watch Soapdish now....

You know what else really sucks, all this crazy casting news has kept you from doing a post about the Spixie Non Wedding Reception. A truly joyous episode, and on GH, that is very very rare.

The group serenade, M&M adorably doing J5, DOUBLE TROUBLE making my dreams hotly come true, Lulu and Dante actually being adorable and ME enjoying them, Wicked Hammered KATE! a la heavily accented Olivia, the list goes on and on with goodness and fun. And if ALL of that isn't blog worthy enough, creepy Ethan karaoked INXS and slimed up on the minor Davis girls Kristina and Molly....EWWWWWW.

So please pretty please give us one of your scathing delightful snort inducing posts about that episode. I can't take anymore casting news. My head is spinning.

Macho macho man....GO MAN GO! Swoon & giggle :-)

Beth R., that is very good news, another Soapdish fan :-) I have this great old friend who whenever I tell her I am depressed she offers to take me to the Shopping Mall in Pyramus! It always gets a smile from me no matter how truly depressed I am.

And I volunteer at a homeless shelter where I have been helping out since I was 15. And there are days when soup is on the menu and that too gives me the giggles. They think I'm nuts. But all I can see is Sally Field in that outfit dishing out soup on the beach to the cast of Les Mis, too funny.


Anyway, Mallory, I look forward to your complete meltdown. Should be entertaining.

I'm totally with Sarah: all the stuff this week is only going to encourage Fucking Frons and Guza, and that is never a good thing.

Ok seriously this is the funniest thing I have read in a long time!! Totally made my day......still chuckling to myself. Thank You :)

I read somewhere he's doing research for his acting class... that he wants the experience of the grueling schedule that soaps are notorious for.

If that's the case, I do admire him for getting in there and trying it for himself. So many actors take on the 'ewww soaps... EWWW' mentality, even if they've been ON them, that it's kind of nice that someone with success wants to give it a try and have the experience for themselves.

Even if it does remain somewhat... puzzling.

The rumor I read is a friend of his from a soap told him that soap acting is truly difficult and grueling. So he shares an agent with Steve Burton and asked his agent to make this happen - he would have joined any soap but GH was convenient due to the connection.

Daniel Desario on GH?!! Blows my mind. James Franco is just cool enough (though a little douchey in real life) in my book to like this development instead of be annoyed that it's GH and not OLTL or Y&R.

"18. (I also would hope that he would at least hold out for The Young and the Restless!) "

Why? So he can play a psycho who kills off yet another legacy character?

Carl, I just think Y&R is miles above GH in terms of quality. That sentence is the very definition of damning with faint praise, I realize.

Bourgeois Nerd, you are wise: I am letting the awesome and the WTFy distract me from the big issues, namely that Bob Guza, Jill Farren Phelps and Brian Frons are still employed. The bastards dangled a James Franco shaped carrot in front of me and I totally took the bait.

Also also, I am loving all of your Soapdish love, guys!

This is no Elizabeth Taylor, but to be fair it's no Richard Simmons either. But I have to say, in the days of these more common guest stints the show could stand on it's own two legs with or with out said people. And frankly, however random, and unplanned by ABC, I'd still just like to see veteran cast members get some love. I'd take Ned, old school Mac, Kevin, and even A.J. over what ever character James Franco will play any day.

That is all I'll say.

Wait. Barney Stinson is <3!

Now, that is all I'll say.

Carl-If he plays a psycho "legacy character" murderer on Y&R he could walk away w/ a cool stuffed kitty. All GH has to offer is a few toxic balls.

For many actors it's all about the swag ;-)

I tried to explain to my mother about the significance of James Franco appearing on GH. I'm pretty sure she thinks I'm crazy.

They can bring any one they want if the writing sucks like most of the soaps it won't make a difference.


I agree with Sarah's comment. I was looking foward to your commentary on the non-wedding of Spixie until all this craziness happened.

Please don't forget about the karaoke madness.

Um, now I really want to watch Soapdish. Must purchase.

And this also reminds me I never finished watching the whole of Freaks & Geeks. Must correct this as well.

16. The only person who I think makes me more hysterical is Leonardo DiCaprio.
YES!YES!YES! I better not EVER see him in public. It's on. Run Leo. Run like the wind. LOL!!

It will be interesting viewing since my husband who insists he never watches (yeah right, sitting at his desk facing the HUGE television isnt watching)but asked 'where's Jason's pink tie' the other day .. I bet he asks WTF is Franco doing on GH?

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