James Franco is in early talks for a starring role in The Game, the MGM movie based on Neil Strauss' New York Times bestseller about picking up women, TheWrap has confirmed.

Strauss documented his experiences in The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists, which was released by Regan Books in 2005. Franco's role would be as Mystery, who taught Strauss how to become a pick-up artist.

The Game is directed by Brian Koppelman and David Levien, both of whom worked on the screenplay. Writers D.B. Weiss (HBO's Game of Thrones), and Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky -- the Emmy-nominated writer-producers of NBC's The Office -- also worked on the project.

Gary Barber, Roger Birnbaum, Andrew Miano, Chris Weitz and Paul Weitz are producing The Game.