James Franco to Play Twins in 1970s Porn Drama from David Simon, HBO

     August 6, 2015

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We’re just a week away from the debut of David Simon and Paul Haggis‘s excellent Show Me a Hero, a ferocious political drama based on a movement to build low-income housing in a predominantly white area of Yonkers in the 1970s, and HBO has already re-upped their partnership with The Wire creator indefinitely. First up is the recently discussed 1970s porn drama, now titled The Deuce, which Simon explained as a critique of modern capitalism nestled within the wild ascension of the porn industry into one of the most profitable businesses in the world. HBO has ordered a pilot of the series and now James Franco has signed on to play the main characters of the period drama, a pair of twins at the center of the porn business. On top of this, Michelle MacLaren, who made her name as one of Breaking Bad‘s most reliable and thoughtful directors, is being looked at to helm the pilot, and possibly the entire series.

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Image via HBO

The Deuce will span the rise of the porn business in New York from the ’70s into the 1980s, with the series also touching on how the HIV outbreak of the ’80s and the mafia got involved and influenced how pornography became America’s not-so-secret top-tier industry. Anyone familiar with The Wire or, for that matter, Simon’s exceptional post-Katrina drama series Treme are likely already champing at the bit, but there’s even more good news. HBO has also ordered a pilot for another Simon project, this one revolving around the heated drama surrounding modern-day Capitol Hill. Little else is known about the latter project, but Simon’s inarguable insight into matters of race, domestic policies, gun control, drugs, and, well, essentially everything Americans argue about promises that both The Deuce and the Capitol Hill project will be major television events. It might also go a long way to bring  more attention to Franco, who has yet to match the challenging, brilliant comic work he did in Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers.

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