James Franco Net Worth
Widely regarded as one of the most talented actors in Hollywood, James Franco is also a charming and well educated man, with a PhD in English and master’s degree in creative writing and film-making. He became pretty well known for his role in the NBC series Freaks and Geeks, while the biography James Dean brought him the 2002 Golden Globe award for best actor.
You’ve seen him in movies like Fly-boys, 127 hours, Tristan & Isolde, Spider-Man and many other goodies, but besides his acting career, James Franco is also a filmmaker and teacher. He might not be one of the richest actors of Hollywood right now, but he’s on his way there with an estimated net worth of more than $20 million.
Early Life and Education
James Edward Franco was born on April 19, 1978 in Palo Alto, California. His family background was academic, liberal and secular. His mother, Betsy Lou, is a writer and editor, while his father, Douglas Eugene ran a Sillicon Valley business. With both of his parents graduates of Stanford University, James couldn’t become less.
Brilliant in math, James was first an intern at Lockheed Martin. Though he flirted with the idea of becoming a marine zoologist, what he really wanted was to become an actor. Much to his parents’ dismay, he dropped out from UCLA after his first year to pursue his dream. He took acting lessons with the acclaimed Robert Carnegie at Playhouse West.
Since his parents didn’t want to support his new path, he had to take a late-night job at McDonald’s to support himself and he even admitted that McDonald’s was there for him when no one else was. While working there, he made the most of his time by practicing accents on customers.
James Franco’s Acting Career
After his 15-month training with Carnegie, he had his debut role in 1999 in the comedy series Freaks and Geeks. But it wasn’t until 2001 when critics took notice of the young actor, when he portrayed James Dean. While some actors need to start crazy workouts for portraying film characters, James had to pick up smoking and got to two packs of cigarettes a day for immersing in that role.
The next role that brought Franco worldwide fame was his queer character in Spider-Man back in 2002. The huge success of the film garnered James more than recognition, boosting his net worth by a few millions. The next two sequels of this film scored no less than that in 2004 and 2007.
Other notable films that made James Franco’s career and net worth grow are The Great Raid, Annapolis, Tristan & Isolde and Flyboys. For the latter, the actor had to be able to fly a real plane, so he obtained his own Private Pilot Licence. Who wouldn’t want that as a job description?
In 2010 his performance in the adventure drama 127 Hours got him an Oscar nomination for best actor. The film tells the true story of a mountain climber’s near-death experience in Utah after a fallen boulder crushes his arm and traps him in a canyon.
His filmography list is long and still growing. From comedies and dramas to science fiction, James Franco is garnering more and more in both popularity and net worth.
As we’ve said earlier, James Franco is also a successful director and author. Franco’s short stories collection Palo Alto, based on his early years, was made into a film with him as a lead actor.
In the meantime, James Franco teaches classes in the School of Theater, Film and Television at the University of California Los Angeles, and since September 2015 he also has a film class at Palo Alto High School.
James Franco has an ambitious schedule. Besides acting, directing and teaching, he’s involved in various multimedia art projects. He recently got into a partnership with Skillshare, an online learning community, to create an online screenwriting class and he’s also published some books, both poetry and novels.
As if it wasn’t enough already, he’s an avid student too. How much sleep does this guy get, if he ever sleeps? With many sources of income and his multitasking abilities, James Franco will grow his net worth more and more in the years to follow.
James Franco’s Houses and Cars
James Franco had an amazing house on Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. While he probably loved it, he sold it for around $3,700,000 several years ago, adding a good sum to his total net worth.
He then purchased his actual house in Silver Lake, Los Angeles, a charming two-unit property for a reasonable $775,000. Compare the two prices and you’ll see that he made a smart move. With 1.496 square feet, the mini compound is a decent place to call home.
While not extravagant, James’s house has a lovely backyard veranda, a large terrace, and many dirt-covered backyard areas under trees. The interior features a narrow dining room and living room with doors that lead to the backyard. The master bedroom has its own fireplace and there is a room at the top of the house with windows on all four sides.
For his daily driving, Franco has an Audi Q3 and an Audi R8. While some prefer luxurious cars or exotic mansions, Franco seems to invest in expensive education and other more intellectual pursuits. Just take a look at the list of the universities and schools he graduated from.
James Franco Net Worth Over Time
James Franco’s net worth started small, but increased fast in these last couple of years. His first TV series, the short lived Freaks and Geeks would bring him less than $2,000 per episode. Its cancellation was not what the actor had hoped for.
Then he was paid $2 million for his work in The Company and $7 million for Oz the Great and Powerful. The Spider-Man trilogy brought him around $12 million. With a regular income of a couple of millions for every movie, and then adding his other sources, his net worth grew steadily to the $22 million estimate of 2016.
If you take a look at the list of incoming movies with James Franco as an actor or director, you’ll quickly understand that he won’t stop here. One of the most expected this year is the science-fiction Alien: Covenant.