Based on the bestselling book, “The Adderall Diaries” follows troubled author Stephen Elliot (James Franco) as he struggles to reconcile his past daddy issues and deal with a potential new love interest, a New York Times court reporter (Amber Heard). As his life is spiraling out of control from drugs and addiction, Stephen becomes engrossed in a murder trial and tries to sell it as his next book, modeled after Truman Capote’s “In Cold Blood.”
Director Pamela Romanowsky worked with an impeccable cast that includes Ed Harris, who comes back into Stephen’s life to tarnish his career. Cynthia Nixon cameos as his harried book agent, saddled with the task of selling Stephen’s book. And in a surprise supporting role, Christian Slater plays the killer on trial for the murder of his wife.
First time feature filmmaker Romanowsky, who went to New York University with Franco, spoke to International Business Times about working with her former classmate and the rest of the talented, prominent cast. She revealed that Franco offered her "The Adderall Diaries" as a project to direct after they collaborated on the short film series, "The Color of Time."
"I love working with him," Romanowsky told IBTimes. "I loved that book. It was a great moment of synchronicity. It’s incredible to have a creative partner, a sounding board in a way, every step of the way through."
Franco not only stars in “The Adderall Diaries,” he’s also credited as a producer. “James was my partner from day one,” recalls Romanowsky. “He’s one of the creative voices I most trust. He saw lots of cuts in the editing room. I sent him songs when I was working with the composer. He’s an important and treasured collaborator.”
But Franco is not the only talented and recognizable face to grace the screen in "The Adderall Diaries."
“I loved working with all my actors. I think also working with actors who were also directors, so James and Ed, is really special,” said Romanowsky. “They have a unique understanding of their craft, but also what my challenges in the moment might be.” She voiced gratitude for Harris' and Franco’s insights and support, adding that they would often bring new ideas to her for scenes. Romanowsky previously worked with Harris at the Sundance Labs and pitched him the part.
Amber Heard also became involved in Romanowsky’s film early on, and the two hit it off on the director’s birthday. “At the time, there was a Pablo Neruda poem in this little scene in the script. By total fate, she had that poem tattooed on her," Romanowsky explained. "The second I met her and we started talking, she was so thoroughly that character.”