James Franco Talks About His Spring Breakers Cornrows, And, Um, “The Itch”

When we first saw James Franco on the set for his indie film Spring Breakers, we'll be honest: We thought he was Kevin Federline. The bad tattoos, the garish bling, and the cornrows definitely harkened back to the days of Britney and Kevin. But then we heard that Franco, for his role as a gun-toting, drug-dealing thug with a heart of gold, was channeling Houston rapper Riff Raff — which made sense because the two are homies, and Riff Raff is known for his intricate and labyrinthine cornrows. (Franco has since explained his portrayal is inspired by a rapper named Dangeruss, but the braids are totally Riff Raff-esque.)
Though he's endured shooting a grueling Oscars and being stuck in a crevice for 127 Hours, his character's hair particularly irked Franco. “Cornrows are very uncomfortable, and anyone that’s had them is a part of a club. Everybody will say, ‘The itch! Yeah, right?” Not only were Franco's cornrows itchy, but they were pretty intense too, with multi-directions and spirals, which were apparently important for the look. "Harmony really wanted to get the look of the character down,” Franco told us. "He wanted it as authentic as possible." Which means, of course, "the itch" had to be included.

Photo: Courtesy AnnaPurna Pictures.

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