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James Franco talks poetry with Jimmy Fallon

James Franco appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Friday to discuss the release of his new poetry collection, Directing Herbert White, which hits shelves on April 15. The collection will be published in Canada by House of Anansi Press and by Graywolf Press in the U.S.

“I know how an actor writing poetry sounds,” Franco told Fallon, adding that he wrote the book during his four years at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina, where he earned his MFA in poetry.

Anansi publicity director Laura Repas says Franco’s appearance on The Tonight Show is a good media hit for the title. Franco’s busy schedule ““ he makes his Broadway debut tomorrow in the adaptation of John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men ““ makes a Canadian launch difficult to plan, but Repas hopes to arrange an event if he travels here in the coming months.

Directing Herbert White references a short film Franco directed, based on a poem by Frank Bidart, who recently won the National Book Critics Circle award for his collection Metaphysical Dog. Bidart blurbed Franco’s collection, saying, “Hollywood ““ fame, celebrity, the promise of becoming an artist ““ is the beast at its center. Franco knows it like Melville knows whaling.”