Bruce Vilanch Says Franco “Didn’t Get There” with Oscars, Franco Fires Back

Up to this point, James Franco has been all but destroyed for his Oscar hosting duties last month.  And now, one of the main writers for the show, Bruce Vilanch, has spoken out about the job…

Vilanch spoke to New York Magazine’s Vulture blog, and said that while Franco had months to prepare, most of his prep work came through phone meetings instead of in person:

“He has so many balls in the air, he didn’t get to town till Thursday before the show on Sunday…I don’t think he realized how big a deal it is to do it until he was actually confronted with it. I think he thought he would kind of … I don’t know what he thought.”

When Vilanch first heard of Franco getting the job, he, like many people, thought maybe it was a joke:

“I thought maybe it was a performance-art prank, and then I realized he sincerely wanted to do it…The only people who know how to host those shows are people who get up onstage every night and say, ‘Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. A funny thing happened… ‘ Or people like Bette [Midler] who get up and sing all night and tell stories.”

And after these comments (and many more in the interview), Franco, himself, took to Twitter to return a dig at Vilanch, tweeting a graffiti-covered picture of himself with Vilanch backstage at the Oscars.  Scribbled writing from Vilanch’s mouth read “James f**ked up the Oscars. Trust me, I know comedy…I mean, come on, I write for Bette Midler!”

Franco has since deleted the tweet and photo, but Vulture was lucky enough to grab it before he took it down (see below).

Despite everything, Vilanch does say that while everyone thought it, Franco was NOT high during the show:

“No, he wasn’t high…I was with him, and he wasn’t high. And I asked him, ‘Are you high, and can I have some?’ And he said no to both.”

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