Sal Mineo Biopic Directed by James Franco Promoted by Trailer (Video)

Wednesday, 02 Oct 2013 07:40 AM

By Clyde Hughes

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Interest in the 2011 biopic "Sal" about Oscar-nominated actor Sal Mineo, directed by James Franco, has been revived by the release of a new trailer.

"Sal" debuted at 2011's Venice Film Festival and stars Val Lauren as Mineo, who captured a best supporting actor nomination playing alongside James Dean in the iconic 1955 "Rebel Without a Cause."

"Sal" examines the last days of Mineo's life, some 20 years after becoming a teen idol and later becoming one of the first actors to publicly acknowledge his homosexuality, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

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Mineo died from a mysterious random stabbing incident in 1976, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

"Released through Tribeca Films, the film focuses on Mineo who, like James Dean before him, struggled against being typecast as the troubled kid before seeing his life cut tragically short in the alley behind his home," reported Carl Rodriguez, of IndieWire.com. "The film looks to be a completely low-budget affair with seemingly little disguising the modern age it was shot in, so perhaps there is a reason why it took nearly two years to finally see the light of day."

Samantha Wilson, of FilmSchoolRejects.com was even more critical in her assessment of the trailer itself.

"While the source material is compelling, the trailer is just awful," Wilson said in a post Tuesday. "It looks like Franco slapped some 1950s-period accurate clothing on Lauren and his cohorts and then filmed in sketchy areas of L.A. when other people just conveniently weren’t around. 'Everybody clear out of this theater for a couple hours, please. I owe Mr. Franco a favor.' The sound is off, too. Is this Franco trying to make a statement again or something that I’m not 'getting?' "

The Hollywood Reporter noted that "Sal" was another in Franco's connection with independent work. The celebrity newspaper said he premiered William Faulkner's "As I Lay Dying" at the Cannes Film Festival. The Reporter wrote that another film based on "Child of God" by Cormac McCarthy was shown at the Toronto Film Festival.

Entertainment Weekly reported that "Sal" will be available on VOD and iTunes on Oct. 22.





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