James Franco is headed back to the MCU.
A former Marvel movie co-star is making his way back to the realm of comic book superheroes.
According to Variety, James Franco, who played Harry Osborn in the original Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy, is current in negotiations to play the X-Men character Multiple Man in his own feature film spin-off. The studio is also courting writer Allan Heinberg, who was behind the screenplay for the wildly successful Wonder Woman movie, to be the project's scribe.
Franco would also have a hand in producing this film through his Ramona Films umbrella, along with his brother Dave Franco and Vince Jolivette. For those not familiar with the character, Multiple Man (aka Jamie Madrox) is a character in the extended X-Men universe who received cloning powers as a newborn and, soon after, is moved by to a farm, along with the rest of his family. Once there, Madrox is fitted with a special suit, which was designed in part by well-known X-Men leader Charles "Professor X" Xavier, to control his powers. However, when the suit malfunctions badly, Multiple Man becomes unhinged and the consequences on the world as we know it could be devastating.
Jeremy Kramer will be the man to oversee the movie's production for Fox, should the negotiations all go according to plan. Franco and Kinberg have also been developing The Hardy Men as a potential starring vehicle for both James and Dave. As the title suggests, the project would have the Franco brothers portray grown-up versions of the literary boy detectives.
The X-Men universe is getting a big push from Fox next year, with New Mutants opening on April 13th, Deadpool 2 on June 1st, and X-Men: Dark Phoenix on November 2nd. In addition to all that, a standalone Gambit film starring Channing Tatum is tentatively programmed for February 14th, 2019.
Franco’s upcoming feature, The Disaster Artist, opens next week (December 1st). It has already been warmly received by critics and looks to add another strong outing in the actor's growing catalog of hits. Only time will tell if this Multiple Man character will prove to be a successful return to the MCU for a man who hasn't donne a superhero costume in over a decade.