VIDEO: Best Friends Engage in a Dangerous Love Triangle in James Franco’s ‘Pretenders’

High-stakes relationship drama stars Shameik Moore, Jane Levy, and Val Kilmer’s son Jack Kilmer

August 26, 2019

Three cinephiles form a love triangle filled with sex, love, and mortal danger in the official trailer for James Franco’s “Pretenders,” opening in theaters in September.

The film school drama follows Terry (played by Jack Kilmer, Val Kilmer’s son), a French New Wave-obsessed director, and Phil (“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’s” Shameik Moore), his photographer best friend, as they both fall for an enigmatic young actress named Catherine (“Castle Rock’s” Jane Levy). The trio eventually find themselves in a complicated, decades-long relationship which, according to the film’s description, results in a dangerous situation that leaves one of them fighting for their life.

Directed by Franco and written by Josh Boone (“The New Mutants”), “Pretenders” co-stars Juno Temple, Brian Cox, Dennis Quaid, and Franco himself as a love-scorned Hollywood producer named Maxwell.

“All directors fall in love with their leading ladies, and sometimes it’s just electric,” the repeat Stern Show guest’s character exclaims near the trailer’s end (above).

Franco seems to be developing a knack for films about films. He visited the Stern Show in 2017 to discuss “The Disaster Artist”—a movie James directed about the making of “The Room”—and just earlier this week a trailer was released for “Zeroville,” another film he directed and stars in about a lost soul with ambitions of making it big in Hollywood.

“Pretenders” is available Oct. 4 in select theaters and Video-On-Demand.

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