Franco and Santana

Late last year former NYU professor Jose Angel Santana claimed he was fired from NYU after giving James Franco a "D" in his “Directing the Actor II” class after the actor missed 12 of the 14 classes while filming 127 Hours. Santana filed a lawsuit against NYU in Manhattan Supreme Court, and a university rep responded saying, "It is regrettable and disappointing to see a faculty member—former or otherwise—discuss any student's grade for the purpose of personal publicity," adding that they didn't fire him, they just didn't renew his teaching contract. Now the former professor is suing James Franco for making “disparaging and inaccurate public statements” about him.

According to the NY Post, Santana headed back to Manhattan Supreme Court, this time seeking unspecified monetary damages in a civil action against Franco. His lawyer says, “When the suit was filed against him, Mr. Franco initially took the high road and said nothing. Unfortunately, he could not help himself once his new movie [The Broken Tower] was being released.”

In April, Franco told reporters that Santana was "awful," and “I didn’t feel like I needed to waste my time with a bad teacher... He wasn’t fired, he was asked not to come back after three years because they didn’t think he was a good teacher." He added, “He’s not going to win the lawsuit and he’s not going to get hired at another institution. It’s ridiculous. And I’m teaching at NYU, so what does that say?”