James Franco accepted to University of Houston doctoral program

Laura Donovan Contributor
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Academy Award-nominee, James Franco’s academic career just got more confusing.

The “Eat Pray Love” star, who is a a Ph.D. student in English at Yale University and alumnus of UCLA, New York University, Brooklyn College, and Columbia University, has been accepted into the University of Houston’s doctoral program in literature and creative writing, reports the Houston Chronicle.

J. Kastely, director of the university’s creative writing program, said Franco intends to enroll in courses in fall 2012, adding the “127 Hours” actor originally planned to start in fall 2011 but has asked to wait another year.

Only 20 individuals from a pool of about 400 applicants get into the graduate program per year, Kastely said, explaining that program acceptance is determined by a writing sample, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. Doctoral students also have to include in their applications “a strong piece of critical writing,” to show scholarly abilities.

Though he has recently gained recognition for his academic contributions, Franco famously hosted this year’s poorly received Oscar ceremony, where he appeared bored, aloof, and apathetic. Critics blasted his performance and even questioned if he’d been stoned.

“Franco seemed distant, uninterested and content to keep his Cheshire-cat-meets-smug smile on display throughout,” wrote the Hollywood Reporter‘s Tim Goodman of Franco’s Academy Awards act. “This year, the Oscars hit a new low. Like it fell into a hole. What was the point, Academy? What did Franco bring to the table? His appearance played more like one of his performance art pieces than an actual attempt to be host. At least Hathaway can sing and dance and be funny.”

If the actor decides to go matriculate at the University of Houston, he will have to avoid engaging in student disputes, as his disagreement with Yale Daily News writer Cokey Cohen received national attention. After Cohen wrote in a February column that Franco’s Twitter “sort of sucks”, the actor reportedly tweeted a photo of himself overlaid with the words “F— THE YALE DAILY NEWS” in red capital letters.