James Franco’s Sal chronicles the final hours of the life of actor Sal Mineo, onetime teen idol and star of the blockbuster films Rebel Without a Cause and Exodus. Although inspired by actual events, the film is not a traditional biopic; rather, it takes the viewer on an intimate journey through the very last day of Mineo’s life. On February 12, 1976, Sal Mineo was no longer the marquee sensation he had once been, but he was finally, after years of heartbreaking setbacks, finding his way to becoming the actor and director he had for so long aspired to be. He was set to direct his first feature film, and was only days away from opening in a play that had already won him rave reviews in San Francisco. Sal Mineo’s life was finally coming together, only to be viciously cut short by a lone attacker and a senseless crime. In Sal, the audience is drawn into Mineo’s world and allowed to experience his final hours, both his highs and lows, the exciting and the somewhat mundane, that ultimately led to a shocking and horrifying conclusion. –Venice Film Festival
James Edward Franco (born April 19, 1978) is an American actor, film director, screenwriter, film producer, and painter. He began acting during the late 1990s, appearing on the short-lived television series Freaks and Geeks and starring in several teen films. In 2001 he played the title role in Mark Rydell’s television biographical film James Dean, which earned him a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Miniseries or Television Film.
In 2008, Franco received his undergraduate degree in English from UCLA. For his degree, Franco prepared his departmental honors thesis under the supervision of novelist Mona Simpson. Subsequently, Franco moved to New York to attend graduate school at Columbia University’s MFA Writing Program and New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where he studied filmmaking. In March 2010, Franco’s manager announced that he had been accepted to Yale’s Ph.D. program in English, and that he would most likely be beginning the program in the fall of that year… read more