James Franco joined friends yesterday for a walk in Vancouver, where he's gearing up to start work on the Planet of the Apes prequel Rise of the Apes with Freida Pinto. He and Freida have a director pal in common — he wrapped filming on 127 Hours earlier this Summer with director Danny Boyle, who was the man behind Freida's Slumdog Millionaire. James is back to focusing on his big-screen work following his latest stint on General Hospital. He has Eat, Pray, Love heading to theaters soon with his "charmingly shy" costar Julia Roberts, who has already started making the promotional rounds. James is also gearing up to return to school this Fall to start a Ph.D. program at Yale and he recently spoke about all his graduate studies, saying, "It saved me in a way. Going to school grounds me. It exposes me to incredibly smart people who are teaching all the subjects that I'm interested in. It keeps me focused where, before, I just would get very anxious about needless things."
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