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Gia Coppola’s Directorial Debut in Venice

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First-time director Gia Coppola says she is trying to find her own voice as a filmmaker, therefore, she didn’t seek much help from either grandfather Francis Ford Coppola or aunt Sofia Coppola.

“It was important for me to find my own voice and try to do it on my own,” she said in an interview Sunday before the debut of her film “Palo Alto”, an adaptation of a book by James Franco of the same name, out of the main competition at the Venice Film Festival — where Sofia walked away with the Golden Lion in 2010 for “Somewhere.” “Palo Alto” is about the vulnerability of four teenagers it follows in Palo Alto, Ca.

Franco plays a soccer coach in the adaptation of his own book, who makes advances on a student, April, played by Emma Roberts. Val Kilmer appears in a cameo as April’s stepfather, which Coppola, 26, helps explain “why she would get entangled with her soccer coach and I think if there was something missing with her life at home.”

Franco walked the red carpet in shaded sunglasses and signed autographs for a force of screaming female fans. But he took on a more serious tone in an interview, saying he was similar to one of the characters, Teddy, a talented artist who gets mixed up with drugs and winds up in trouble.

“I guess I was a little like that, I was into art, I got into a bit of trouble, and yeah, that’s me,” Franco said.

Although Palo Alto made its debut at the Telluride Film Festival towards the end of August, the flick doesn’t have a proper release date to speak of at the moment. Fans of Franco’s stories may have to wait a while before they can experience the cinematic endeavor for themselves.

Sofia and Gia Coppola aren’t the only people in her family looking to follow in The Godfather director’s footsteps. Writer-director Roman Coppola unleashed his directorial debut “CQ” back in 2001. Unfortunately, the film remains unseen to this day. He followed up this effort with the 2012 Charlie Sheen drama “A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III”. Roman has also directed music videos for the likes of Green Day and Moby.

Gia Coppola’s Directorial Debut in Venice
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