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James Franco’s Art-Imitates-Life Film, Palo Alto, Gets New Trailer

James Franco and Emma Roberts star in a teen coming of age movie that has striking parallels to one of Franco's real life episodes.

James Franco and Emma Roberts star in a teen coming of age movie that has striking parallels to one of Franco’s real life episodes.

Emma Roberts runs the gauntlet of teen sex, drugs and juvenile delinquency in a new trailer for “Palo Alto,” a coming of age tale about a girl who is trying to find herself and where she fits in.

The premise is very similar to Catherine Hardwicke’s 2003 drama “Thirteen.” It just ramps up the plot to high school from middle school.

Roberts’ sweet character, April, is a popular, if naive, 14-year-old, who excels at soccer and spends her weekends babysitting.

Her biggest customer is Mr. B. (James Franco), a single dad who coaches her high school team and pays her to watch his kid.

April, who has as many questions about who she is and where she fits in as a Monday morning pop quiz, looks to Mr. B as a mentor and authority figure. But like others who surround her, he has his own designs and ultimately seduces April.

The trailer was released Monday (Apr 1) with little fanfare until Franco got caught up in a life-imitates-art episode with a 17-year-old tourist from Scotland.

They exchanged text messages, which leaked, showing him trying to entice her to join him in a hotel room.

What’s astounding about the text-messages is Franco’s abrupt and demanding requests, apparently counting on the girl’s infatuation with his celebrity status to go to bed with him.

The girl’s skepticism about who he really was (it was April Fool’s Day, after all) may have been the only thing that kept them from meeting up.

The age of consent in New York is 17, so no laws were broken. But the episode has been extremely embarrassing for Franco, especially in light of the movie.

Gia Coppola directed the “Palo Alto,” and wrote the screenplay based on one of Franco’s short stories. It was actually filmed in 2012 and screened last year at the Telluride Film Festival and the Venice Film Festival.

Although it’s been lightly reviewed, the nine movie critics who weighed in on the film gave it a solid 89 percent rating on rottentomatoes/em>, which tracks movie reviews.

Check out the trailer below and follow TheImproper on Twitter for the latest on James Franco’s pursuit of young teen girls.

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