James Franco

NYU prof claims he was fired for giving James Franco a bad grade

Dec. 19, 2011 at 11:43 AM ET

James Franco might have moved on from his endeavors at NYU, but the actor is still a publicity machine for the university, but maybe not in the way NYU would have hoped for this time around. One of Franco's former professors, José Angel Santana, claims that he was fired for giving Franco a "D" in his class, "Directing the Actor II," and he's suing the school.

Jack Plunkett / AP file /
Actor James Franco was shooting the film "127 Hours" while also taking classes at NYU.

According to the New York Post, Santana's decision to give the poor grade stemmed from Franco's attendance in the class, or lack thereof. Franco allegedly missed 12 of the 14 classes, and since handing out the D, "Santana has suffered all kinds of drama -- first from Franco, who publicly ridiculed him, then from his department, which axed him over the 'D,'" according to the Post.

“In my opinion, they’ve turned the NYU graduate film degree into swag for James Franco’s purposes, a possession, something you can buy,” Santana told the paper.

Franco seemed incredulous over the grade when Showbiz411 spoke to him. “I did the work, I did well in everything else," Franco said at the time.

As for NYU, the University has yet to actually see what's been filed, but based on the following statement, their stance is clear. "We have not seen the lawsuit yet, but the claims we are seeing in the media are ridiculous. Beyond that, it is regrettable and disappointing to see a faculty member -- former or otherwise -- discuss any student's grade for the purpose of personal publicity."