How the story of the worst movie ever made became one of 2017’s best films

By MARK VIOLA

We sometimes throw out the phrase “stranger than fiction” too easily these days, but it seems apt when talking about the making of “The Room,” the 2003 movie that is widely considered one of the worst films ever made.

Indeed, if you set out to tell the behind-the-scenes tale of a mysterious eccentric self-financing a vanity project to the tune of $6 million, casting himself as the lead with a script he wrote while also handling the directing duties — even though he had little to no experience in any of these fields — you’d probably be laughed out of the room for the sheer unbelievability of it all. And that doesn’t even get to the part where the film becomes a cult classic for its sheer horrible audacity, sparking special screenings around the world, during which audience members shout their favorite cringe-inducing lines and throw spoons at the screen in recognition of the inexplicable prevalence of spoon-related artwork in the movie.

But that is exactly what Tommy Wiseau did when he created “The Room,” and telling that tale is James Franco (“This Is The End”), who much like his muse, stars in and directs “The Disaster Artist,” based on the memoir of Greg Sestero, Wiseau’s friend and co-star in “The Room.”

The result is a hilarious and surprisingly poignant story about a man following his dreams to their inevitable and disastrous conclusion.

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