EVANSTON, IL—A&O Productions and Northwestern University announced yesterday that James Franco will visit campus Saturday as winter speaker, followed this year by an appearance as spring speaker, Dillo Day headliner, Blowout performer, and poetry professor. Franco, an actor famed for his role in “Freaks and Geeks,” squinting, and his diverse creative talents, was A&O’s ﬁrst choice for all of the positions.
“As soon as we saw how well students reacted to his poetry reading we knew Northwestern University needed more of James Franco,” said A&O spokeswoman Jeremiah Spunkleford, referencing the actor’s recent appearance at the Chicago Humanities Festival at Northwestern’s law school. “We’re grateful James Franco has been so cooperative with our move toward integrating him fully into the Northwestern experience.”
“We’re thrilled to announce there’s going to be more James Franco at Northwestern University,” continued Spunkleford. “A lot more.”
Franco’s upcoming appearances are scheduled for April as spring speaker, May 31 as the headlining musical act of the recently renamed Franco Day and again in October as the Fall Blowout headliner.
A&O productions, a group comprised of Northwestern students, is charged with procuring performers for its annual Northwestern campus events, including speakers, comedians and musical acts. A representative of A&O productions reported that the group was “hoping to get James Franco as winter speaker. We never could have dreamed it would turn into something this big. He’s talented in so many ways. We’re hoping we can showcase that diversity with speeches, comedy acts and musical performances.”
That the university’s appointment of Franco as a professor of Creative Writing fell on the same day as A&O’s appointment is apparently a coincidence. In a press conference earlier today, Northwestern University president Morton Schapiro lauded that, “Franco is, without doubt, the single foremost mind of poetry in the world today. We’re lucky to have the opportunity to welcome Professor James Franco into a central role at our school.”
This announcement was met by a chant of Franco’s name led by an excited Schapiro.
Franco’s appointment, an apparently expensive one, appears to be connected to strict budget cuts across the university which have resulted in the ﬁring of several professors and postponement of all ongoing campus construction projects. All attempts to contact Schapiro for a comment resulted in a voicemail message by Franco himself in which Schapiro can only be heard giggling in the background.
At press time, Northwestern was in talks with Franco regarding changes that would bring the actor directly into university classrooms, as both a teacher and student, promising constant student interaction with Franco.
“Right now we don’t see any limit to the extent of James Franco,” reported a Northwestern ofﬁcial. “We’re exploring possibilities of including Franco in student parties, providing eye contact with Franco on Sheridan and even appearances by James Franco in the SPAC showers. This is going to be a new Northwestern.”