James Franco to Prepare for His First Onscreen Amputation

January 6, 2010

James Franco has landed the lead in director Danny Boyle's newest film, 127 Hours. This will be the first film Boyle has directed since his Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire.

Franco is going to have to make us care enough about his character to watch him for about an hour with his arm pinned by a boulder, seeing as this is the exact thing that happened to hiker Aron Ralston. Ralston (whom the movie is based on), while climbing in Utah, wound up having to amputate his own arm in order to free himself from said boulder.

A new tweet from Production Weekly tells us that "James Franco will play mountaineer Aron Ralston in Danny Boyle's 127 Hours, filming begins early March in Utah." This is exciting stuff. Rumors had suggested that Ryan Gosling might get the part, but now it's official: Franco's the man.

Ralston was trapped for over five days by this boulder, which means he spent a lot of time alone. Which means Franco is going to be on screen for a whopping hour, during which time he is apparently going to have zero lines. That's right, folks: the first hour of 127 Hours is going to have no talking in it, according to the screenwriter, Simon Beaufoy.

But hey, if Tom Hanks can do it in Castaway Franco can do it in this. Right? Yeah...we'll see about this. This could be the recipe for a really dull film, punctuated by the most realistic onscreen amputation we've ever seen.

Source: Shawn Ehlers/Getty Images