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NYU Professor

I Got Fired for

Giving James Franco a 'D'

12/19/2011 9:37 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

A former NYU professor claims he got the chop because he dared give James Franco a "D" -- this according to a new lawsuit.

José Angel Santana -- who taught Franco in his "Directing the Actor" class -- is now suing the University for his job back, claiming he was wrongfully terminated ... because he's an Hispanic man with the audacity to give Franco a low grade.

According to the lawsuit, Santana dropped the D on Franco for missing 12 of the 14 classes in the MFA course. No shocker, considering the pic TMZ posted back in 2009 ... showing Franco passed out at one of his Columbia classes.

1219_james_franco_EXWM_02When people found out that Santana gave Franco a D, Santana claims he suffered all sorts of public humiliation -- at the hands of James Franco ... and the University itself, which ultimately fired him ... something he claims would never have happened to a white professor.

According to Santana, other teachers played favorites with Franco, including fellow professor Jay Anania ... who Franco hired to write and direct the film "Shadows & Lies." 

Santana groused, "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 Post, “The university has done everything in its power to curry favor with James Franco.”

10:28 AM PT: NYU claims it hasn't seen the papers but calls what has been reported about the lawsuit "ridiculous" -- adding, "It is regrettable and disappointing to see a faculty member -- former or otherwise -- discuss any student's grade for the purpose of his or her personal publicity."


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That's what happens when the education system is turned into a commercial enterprise...somebody tell Jose' to, "shut the F up hoe", since he can't understand that those of us who pay cash to go to school consider our enrollment nothing more than business ventures! If everybody's getting money, getting paid, getting cashed out, that should be a win win! 88 the Alien says to blame it on capitalism...

982 days ago


Why would you even bother going to college if you're only going to show up to 2 out of 14 classes? And how the hell do you get a degree in something if you only went to class twice? I believe the disgruntled professor. I'm sure the other teachers did let Franco slide by and do whatever and that's a damn shame.

982 days ago


Wouldn't have been fired if he was white? EVERYBODY knows white people cause 85% of America's problems. NOBODY wants to live in an all white neighborhood. TO MUCH CRIME! I am threatened by white people. Very violent by nature.

982 days ago


i agree with delaware, anyone that missed 12 of 14 classes should have flunked or expelled. what a douchebag! hope the teacher wins his lawsuit.

982 days ago


Franco is way overrated and was awful last year as co-host of the Acadamy awards show........

982 days ago


So basically what they are saying is, "It's embarrassing to us that a former teacher would disclose the fact that this celebrity got a bad grade at our school, when we have gone to great lengths to cover his ass and bend over backwards for this celebrity because now we look like money can buy grades."

982 days ago


I had class with James Franco. He was never there. Barely attended NYU to begin with and still owes the University money. He's very lazy. I do believe the instructor, but in all honesty, he deserved an F not a D. I also know for a fact the University in question will cater to any student whose parents are influential. Why even have a curriculum if you are just going to let certain students get away with stuff. If the parents call and threaten a lawsuit, their "adult" children don't have to take courses. It's a shame because there are so many students that actually do the work and don't threaten or want to be catered to. This is why Columbia U. has gotten better than NYU. NYU doesn't care about students or their employees it's all about the mighty dollar with them.

982 days ago


i'm no franco fan but this guy sounds like he just wants a payoff from a lawsuit. and i do agree with NYU that releasing a students grade like that is unconscionable, if that shows the kind of professor he was than i understand how he got canned!!

982 days ago


NYU is just a big playground for rich kids. You don't really have to be smart to go there, just loaded.

982 days ago


He deserves in F, missing 12 out of 14 in an MFA course??? At Juilliard, they don't don't even let actors "work" during their time honing their skills. I believe this professor.

982 days ago


I agree he did deserve an "F" for ******* douche bag for what he did that to that teacher, racist bastard I hope his movie career gets flushed down the toilet, it's those kind of people you really gotta think about, what a bastard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

982 days ago


The guy need an special treatment, hold it after class and tell him whatever you want but a "D" for a superstar my god, if I'm the president at university I fire you too for incompetent.
The picture at this news say everything, the guy doesn't have soo much time to loose.

982 days ago



982 days ago


I think it's odd that NYU is accusing this professor of seeking publicity when two of their instructors used their connections with Franco to make a cameo in one of his movies and write a script for one of his movies.

Famous people should not be given special treatment by academic institutions.

982 days ago


If i had missed that amount of days in college i wouldve been dropped out of the class.

982 days ago
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