The Disaster Artist hit theaters this weekend, and the movie is already drumming up some awards season buzz. Chief among the praise is James Franco's portrayal of Tommy Wiseau, the man who wrote, directed, produced and starred in The Room, the best bad movie ever made. Wiseau is a unique figure to be sure, and critics are shining a light on Franco's spot-on performance capturing all of Wiseau's quirks. Aside from his fashion sense, Wiseau is known for his mysterious accent, which no one has ever really been able to place. Watch Franco slide into his Wiseau impression effortlessly in the clip below.
James Franco pulls double duty on The Disaster Artist, both directing and starring in the movie. Franco plays Tommy Wiseau, an enigmatic figure with big Hollywood dreams who decided to create his own movie, The Room. To promote The Disaster Artist, Franco appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and previewed just a little of his Wiseau impression. If you've never heard Wiseau speak before, just know that Franco does a really good impression of him, capturing his vaguely Eastern European accent to the letter. Franco slides into the voice no problem, switching back and forth between his own voice and Wiseau's for Fallon. Considering that Franco directed the movie in-character, he's pretty good at the voice by now.
Using his Tommy Wiseau impression, James Franco told a fun story about how he convinced Wiseau to let Franco play him in The Disaster Artist. During a phone conversation, after Franco got the okay to direct, he asked Wiseau what actor should play him in the movie. Wiseau simply said, "Johnny Depp," (which is such a perfect Wiseau answer of expectations vs. reality), and when Franco laughed, he asked "What so funny?" His second choice was James Franco.
If you don't know much about Tommy Wiseau, then you share something in common with almost everyone else on the planet. Wiseau's backstory is a mystery, and no one is quite sure where he comes from or even how old he is. This is partly due to Wiseau telling conflicting details about his own past, and even his accent doesn't quite give much away. He rose to stardom after The Room became a hit in the midnight movie screening circuit.
Directed by James Franco, The Disaster Artist is based on the true story behind the making of The Room, said to be The Citizen Kane of bad movies. Franco leads the film as the mastermind behind The Room, Tommy Wiseau, while his brother Dave Franco stars as Wiseau's friend, Greg Sestero. The movie is out in theaters right now. If you seen The Room, but still want to check out The Disaster Artist, then bone up on all the facts you need to know about The Room with our handy guide.