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James Franco Finds Lead For His Sal Mineo Biopic

Posted by , on May 10, 2011 at 10:57 pm 

James Franco played his look-alike James Dean in Mark Rydell‘s 2001 TV biopic and now he is taking on another related project. Though, he won’t be starring in the film and it won’t be focused on James Dean. Instead, he will direct a biopic on one of Dean’s most memorable costars, Sal Mineo, who starred in Rebel Without a Cause with the famous actor. THR now lets us know who will play Mineo.

Val Lauren has taken on the role. The relatively unknown actor will appear on the Hawaii Five-0 season finale and has also been seen in Dallas 362 and his short film Help, which he is turning into a feature. The Mineo biopic will be based on Sal Mineo: A Biography by Michael Gregg Michaud and adapted by Franco himself. Like Dean, Mineo’s life was also ended early, being murdered at 37. The gay actor was nominated for a best supporting actor Oscar in both 1955 for Rebel and in 1960 for Exodus.

Sal begins shooting in Los Angeles this summer, before Sam Raimi’s Oz The Great And Powerful kicks off with Franco as our lead.

What do you think about Franco’s choice for lead actor in his biopic? Are you familair with Mineo’s life story?

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