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James Franco Separates the Sheep from the…; Andrew Neel Makes a Pledge for “Goat”

Some indie projects take their time to find proper footing. After falling in the laps of David Gordon Green, Jeff Nichols and actor Emile Hirsch, according to TheWrap, Brad Land’s Goat appears to have a new set of four legs in James Franco, Rabbit Bandini’s James Franco and Vince Jolivette is teaming with those that originally optioned the book almost a decade back in Killer Films’ Christine Vachon and David Hinojosa (associate producer for Lance Edmands’ Bluebird). Best know for “phoning” in King Kelly back in 2012 — the Louise Krause starrer premiered at SXSW, Andrew Neel has reworked the script and is tapped to direct — the only question now is to put the screenplay out to upcomer “it” type actors. Expect future casting announcements in the near future. Serving as as executive producer is John Wells (Love & Mercy).

Gist: Based on the screenplay by David Gordon Green, with revisions by Neel and Mike Roberts (co-writer on King Kelly), this is based on Brad Land’s memoir, which deals with themes of masculinity, violence and brotherhood, recounting the author’s experience as a recovering assault victim drawn into the barbaric humiliation rituals of fraternity hazing during his freshman year at Clemson U.

Worth Noting: Neel wore his producer’s cap (SeeThink Films) on an indie film with a lot of heart in Sam Fleischner’s Stand Clear of the Closing Doors – which I caught at Karlovy Vary (here’s video).

Do We Care?: We read the book way back when and the source material alone will make for a jarring, unnerving portrait and certainly having two sets of producing teams means their is backlash potential in fire-starter friendly material.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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