03/11/2014 06:54 pm ET Updated May 10, 2014

James Franco's Franco Fest

The interesting thing about death is that whenever it presents itself, life immediately becomes the focus of all attention. Deep rooted self-reflection mixed with self-doubt appears in the form of questions like what is the meaning of life, why are we really here, and what is it all for? A heavy fog of pain, anxiety, discomfort, sorrow, confusion, betrayal and emptiness cocoons around the grieving.

This past Saturday, I had the opportunity to attend the Franco Fest at the IFC in New York City. The 9:45 show -- of which I was a ticketholder -- played two short films directed by James Franco, Idaho and Brad Renfro Forever, followed by a brief Q&A with the man himself, Franco. This relatively small theater -- compared to the gigantic commercial movie theaters we are accustomed to- paved way for an intimate and interesting viewing experience.

Brad Renfro Forever is a 26 minute short film depicting James Franco having the tattoo "Brad" carved into his arm with a knife by a famous tattoo artist Mark Maloney. The tattoo is Franco's way of acknowledging the death of a fellow actor, Brad Renfro who tragically died of a drug overdose at the age of 25. Although, I didn't immediately realize who Renfro was, I remembered him from one of his most famous roles as the eleven year old child in The Client co-starring Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones. The film did well and at the time, fans probably imagined a long standing career for Renfro.

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