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Zachary Quinto and Emma Roberts Join James Franco’s ‘Michael’ (EXCLUSIVE)

The script is based on a controversial magazine story

Zachary Quinto and Emma Roberts will be joining James Franco in the drama “Michael,” about an anti-gay pastor who was once gay himself, Variety has learned.

Quinto will play the former boyfriend of Franco’s character. Roberts is set to reteam with her “Palo Alto” co-star as his girlfriend. Chris Zylka (“The Leftovers”) is also attached to the film as another past love interest.

The script for “Michael” is based on “My Ex-Gay Friend,” a New York Times Magazine article by Benoit Denizet-Lewis (author of “Travels with Casey”) about Michael Glatze, a Christian minister from Wyoming who was so entrenched in gay culture before he rejected his homosexuality, he founded a gay youth magazine. Justin Kelly will direct. Gus van Sant is the executive producer, along with producers Franco, Vince Jolivette, Michael Mendelsohn, Ron Singer and Scott Reed.

“This isn’t just a story about an ‘ex-gay,'” Kelly said. “It’s actually a very relatable story about the power of belief and the desire to belong.”

Added Denizet-Lewis: “I’m excited that everyone involved in this project is intent on telling a story that captures the full breadth of Michael’s unusual life, from the inspiring gay leader I knew when I was young to the Christian pastor he is today.”

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