James Franco shares snap of himself as gay man-turned-pastor in new movie, 'Michael'
Oscar-nominated actor James Franco has shared the first picture from his upcoming film, "Michael," on Instagram.
The picture is a still image from a video, and shows a forlorn Franco staring off-camera. Blonde, wavy hair and a striped T-shirt complete the look as Franco transforms into Michael Glatze.
Glatze is a formerly gay man who eventually became a pastor. He is now married to a woman, Rebekah, and leads a small church in Wyoming. He hopes that God will use the film to send a positive message.
"We're not sure where the movie will go with my life story, but we'll pray that God will use it and we see it as a positive," he told the Christian Post in a May interview.
"James Franco has also told me that he isn't interested in demonising my character, so we'll see. There's a lot more to come."
Pastor Glatze received considerable backlash from the LGBT community after he condemned homosexuality in a December 2013 blog post.
"I do believe that homosexuality is a flaw, a mistake, a distortion and something from which one can be completely restored," he wrote in WND. "I do know that this viewpoint flies in the face of people's personal decisions, as well as some popular politics in this world."
"Michael" director Justin Kelly said the film will be about more than just Glatze's denunciation of his past.
"This isn't just a story about an 'ex-gay,'" he told Variety last month. "It's actually a very relatable story about the power of belief and the desire to belong."
Glatze said that despite his critics, he will continue to share his testimony.
"As a Christian, I would be a liar if I didn't tell people Who God is, what He has done in my life and how He continues to provide for me (and now – thank God – my family) in ways that are more numerous than I can count," he said.
"Star Trek" castmember Zachary Quinto plays Glatze's former boyfriend, and Emma Roberts and Chris Zylka also star in the film. "Michael" is expected to be released in 2015.