The Disaster Artist

The Disaster Artist Information

The Disaster Artist is a 2017 American biographical comedy-drama film directed, produced by, and starring James Franco. Based on Greg Sestero's non-fiction book of the same name, the film chronicles the making of Tommy Wiseau's 2003 cult film The Room.

The film stars James and Dave Franco as Wiseau and Sestero, respectively, alongside a supporting cast featuring Seth Rogen, Josh Hutcherson, Zac Efron, Hannibal Buress, Melanie Griffith, Sharon Stone, and Jacki Weaver. Principal photography of the film began on December 8, 2015. It had its world premiere at South by Southwest on March 12, 2017. It is scheduled to be released in a limited release on December 1, 2017 by A24, before opening wide on December 8, 2017.


The film depicts the meeting and early friendship of the actor Greg Sestero and Tommy Wiseau, the actor, writer and director behind the 2003 cult film The Room, a film often hailed as the Citizen Kane of bad movies, the troubled making of it and their respective careers after the surprising success of the film.


Celebrity cameos include Bryan Cranston, Zach Braff, J. J. Abrams, David DeCoteau, Lizzy Caplan, Kristen Bell, Keegan-Michael Key, Adam Scott, Danny McBride, and Tommy Wiseau.



In February 2014, Seth Rogen's production company Point Grey Pictures announced it had acquired the book and life rights to The Disaster Artist. James Franco would direct and play Wiseau, and his brother Dave Franco would star as Sestero. Franco stated The Disaster Artist was "a combination of Boogie Nights and The Master." On September 8, 2014, it was announced that Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, screenwriters of The Fault in Our Stars, The Spectacular Now, and 500 Days of Summer, would write the script for The Disaster Artist. Cinematography for The Disaster Artist is by Brandon Trost, who previously shot This Is the End and The Interview. The title was changed from The Disaster Artist to The Masterpiece in April 2016, though The Disaster Artist was confirmed as the official title when the film's SXSW premiere was announced.


In June 2014, James Franco's younger brother, Dave Franco, informally announced at a midnight showing of The Room that he had been cast in the co-starring role of Greg Sestero. Upon asking Tommy Wiseau, through a Q&A session, his thoughts about him playing Sestero, Wiseau praised the decision. As New Line Cinema sought to acquire The Disaster Artist in October 2015, one of the film's producers and James Franco's frequent collaborator, Seth Rogen, was negotiating for the role of The Rooms script supervisor Sandy Schklair. Schklair expressed concern over the film's portrayal of him, as Rogen did not pursue contact with him, despite his offers to sit down and discuss the film. The remainder of the principal cast was revealed in the days prior to the beginning of filming in early December 2015: Josh Hutcherson plays Philip Haldiman, Ari Graynor as Juliette Danielle, Jacki Weaver as Carolyn Minnott, Hannibal Buress as Bill Meur, Andrew Santino as Scott Holmes, and Zac Efron as Dan Janjigian. Dave Franco's then-fiance, Alison Brie, joined the cast in the role of Sestero's then-girlfriend. Sharon Stone was later announced to have been cast as Hollywood talent agent Iris Burton. Sestero announced in January 2016 that Bryan Cranston was cast in the movie in an undisclosed role, then announced in November 2016 that he would be playing himself during his time working on Malcolm in the Middle.


Dave Porter composed the film's score.


Principal photography began on December 8, 2015, in Los Angeles. Filming ended on January 28, 2016.


The film had its work in progress premiere at South by Southwest on March 12, 2017. In May 2017, A24 acquired distribution rights to the film, and set the film for a limited release on December 1, 2017, before opening wide on December 8. Warner Bros. Pictures will distribute the film internationally.

Critical response

On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 92% based on 12 reviews, with an average rating of 8.5/10. Metacritic, another review aggregator, assigned the film a weighted average score of 82 out of 100, based on 7 critics, indicating "universal acclaim."

At the film's initial screening at South by Southwest it received a standing ovation.

Erik Childress of The Playlist gave the film a positive review writing: "It's James Franco's best performance since his Oscar-nominated turn in 127 Hours and as a director it is nice to finally see him embrace the comfort zone of comedy with enough cameos to rival Robert Altman's The Player." Peter Debruge of Variety also gave the film a positive review writing: "A genuine capacity to delight, whether or not the audiences in question have seen The Room."

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