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Starlets join James Franco in ‘Spring Breakers’

Emma Roberts, Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez in talks for Korine pic

Harmony Korine has set his next project with “Spring Breakers,” the story of four college girls who rob a restaurant to pay for their trip to the beach, with James Franco attached and Emma Roberts, Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez in talks to star.

Should Hudgens and Gomez’s deals close, the risque, avant garde material for which Korine is known would be a change of pace from the safe Disney Channel fare that launched them to stardom. It’ll also be a dark turn for Franco, who’s coming off Disney’s “Oz: The Great and Powerful.”

Korine, whose previous pic was “Trash Humpers,” is best known for penning Larry Clark’s “Kids,” as well as writing and directing “Gummo” and “Mister Lonely.” He will write and helm “Spring Breakers.”

Roberts would play a Southerner who feeds off danger, while Gomez would play a religious girl. The rest of the group would include Hudgens. Franco will co-star as a drug and arms dealer who bails them out of jail.

MJZ prexy David Zander will produce with Chris Hanley of Muse Prods., as well as Charles-Marie Anthonioz (“Trash Humpers”) and Jordan Gertner. Production will take place during spring break in Florida.

Franco, who most recently toplined “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” will soon be seen in a trio of indies — “Maladies” with Catherine Keener, “The Stare” with Winona Ryder and “Cherry” with Heather Graham. Franco, who’s currently prepping several passion projects as a multi-hyphenate, is also expected to co-star in Seth Rogen’s directorial debut “The Apocalypse.”

Roberts, who’s coming off a starring turn in “Scream 4,” recently wrapped a supporting role in Lee Toland Krieger’s indie dramedy “Celeste and Jesse Forever.”

Hudgens, who recently starred in “Sucker Punch” and “Beastly,” is currently filming the serial killer thriller “Frozen Ground” with John Cusack and Nicolas Cage. Thesp next stars in New Line’s “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” and Ron Krauss’ indie “Gimme Shelter.”

Coming off “Monte Carlo,” Gomez is attached to star in “Hot Mess” and will soon be seen in Disney’s “The Muppets.”

CAA packaged the project and will rep its domestic distribution rights, as the powerhouse agency reps Korine, Franco, Roberts, Hudgens and Gomez. Franco, Roberts, Hudgens and Gomez are respectively managed by Miles Levy of James/Levy Management, David Sweeney of Sweeney Entertainment, Evan Hainey of Untitled Entertainment and Mandy Teefey of LH7 Management. Hudgens and Gomez are also repped by attorneys Stephen Espinoza and PJ Shapiro, respectively.

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