James Franco is closing his deal to star in Sam Raimi’s Oz, The Great and Powerful. That’s not really news since we reported last week that Mila Kunis joining the project had basically put Franco on board. The real news in Deadline‘s story is how the busy actor’s schedule for 2011 is set to play out. In addition to the press he’ll most likely be doing for his 2011 films Your Highness and Rise of the Apes, he’s got three films set for the year. First up, he’ll costar with Ben Stiller, Greta Gerwig, and Cate Blanchett in Noah Baumbach’s While We’re Young. In the summer he’ll move on to Oz, which is an origin story of the Wizard of Oz and the land’s various witches. Finally, in the late fall/winter he’ll star alongside Nicole Kidman in David Cromer’s revival of the Tenneesse Williams play Sweet Bird of Youth.
Throughout his shooting scheduled he’ll continue working towards getting his PhD in creative writing at Yale. I’ll be pretty busy myself, especially in the fall when a bunch of new video games come out. Sure, Franco may make loads of money, earn tons of awards, and get his doctorate, but will he have solved all of the Riddler’s clues in Batman: Arkham City? I think not.