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James Franco Sticks Up For Shia LaBeouf

- Ken Lombardi | CBS News
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Shia LaBeouf & James Franco (credit: Ian Gavan/Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images)

Shia LaBeouf & James Franco (credit: Ian Gavan/Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images)

(CBS NEWS) – Shia LaBeouf is receiving some support from a Hollywood peer.

Oscar-nominated actor James Franco penned an op-ed piece, published Wednesday in The New York Times, on the former “Transformers” star’s recent behavior.

“Though the wisdom of some of his actions may seem questionable, as an actor and artist I’m inclined to take an empathetic view of his conduct,” Franco wrote.

LaBeouf, 27, has been under the focus of media scrutiny since December, when he was accused of plagiarizing the work of graphic novelist Daniel Clowes for his short film “HowardCantour.com.” Soon after, allegations of plagiarism were again leveled at LaBeouf over his public apology to Clowes.

The actor’s behavior further came under the microscope after he wore a paper bag, inscribed with the words “I am not famous anymore,” over his head to the premiere of his new film, “Nymphomaniac.” He was also seen donning a similar bag last week in an L.A. art installation called “#IAmSorry.”

Franco elaborated, “Indeed I hope — and, yes, I know that this idea has pretentious or just plain ridiculous overtones — that [LaBeouf's] actions are intended as a piece of performance art, one in which a young man in a very public profession tries to reclaim his public persona.”

The “This Is the End” star and Palo Alto-native went on to note that performers have been known to rebel at times during their careers.

“As an actor, you are often in the uncomfortable position of being the most visible part of a project while having the least amount of say over its final form,” Franco wrote.

Read more at CBSNews.com

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