James Franco has received a host of critical acclaim for his role as Aron Rolston, the stranded hiker who cut off his arm after being pinned under a boulder in “127 Hours,” but if Luke Perry had his way, that part would have been played by one of his former “90210” co-stars.
“This movie that was made just recently — Danny Boyle film with James Franco about, the story of Aron Rolston — ‘127 Hours’ — I tried to acquire the rights to the story and do it with Brian [Austin] Green,” Luke revealed to Billy Bush and Kit Hoover on Friday’s Access Hollywood Live.
“Brian’s a great actor,” Luke continued of the star, who now appears on “Desperate Housewives.” “I thought he ‘d be great in that part, but Danny Boyle, he got it… Brian’s a great actor and I always wanted to find something to do with him.”
Instead, most recently, Luke teamed up with another “90210” pal, Jason Priestley, who directed him in their new Hallmark Movie Channel original film, “Goodnight for Justice,” which premieres on Saturday, January 29 at 8 PM.
“Luke’s an absolute joy to work with, he always has been,” Jason told Billy and Kit of teaming up with his longtime pal, who he joined on Friday’s Access Hollywood Live. “Luke and I have worked together numerous times over the last 20 years… and we’ve been great friends for the last 20 years.”
Jason said he encountered little difficulty directing Luke in the Western about a man who goes after an outlaw who destroyed his family.
“My job with him was really very minimal,” Jason said. “I just had to push him a little bit in one direction or the other, given the scenes. But he really had such a great handle on this character.”
It’s a new type of project for the two stars, and while they’re older, they still look back fondly on the work they did on “Beverly Hills, 90210.” In fact, when asked about the latest controversy concerning “Skins” — MTV’s racy new show, which depicts some hard-partying and sexually active teens — Luke, who has not seen that show, seemed even more proud of his days at West Beverly High.
“It’s pretty hypocritical of MTV, you know, they kicked [Andrew] Dice Clay off for life because he dropped one F-bomb and if you think about it, what’s going on here is doing a lot more damage than that,” Luke said. “Certainly we got criticized in our day for doing some stuff that was racy and a little bit ahead of the curve, and we did… I will say that we tried to do it with a sense of conscience though, the idea that we’re doing this for the reason of ‘bringing light to.’”
Luke pointed out that topics like HIV, which was addressed on his ‘90s show, had a message.
“At that time, HIV was still really misunderstood and it was getting out of control in the teen community. When we started doing storylines about it, people were like, ‘Are you sure you want to touch on that?’” Luke recounted. “Aaron [Spelling] was always pretty insistent that we try and do it in a responsible way. And like I said, I’ve not seen the show, so I can’t say, but it seems in general, it’s more exploitive than informative — a lot of the television that’s on today [is].”