James Franco is to direct 'As I Lay Dying'.

The actor - who is to host next month's Oscars, where he has been nominated for Best Actor for his role in '127 Hours' - will helm the movie, which is based on William Faulkner's novel.

Speaking about his plans for 2011, James told MTV News: "This summer I'm going to direct a movie based on William Faulkner's novel 'As I Lay Dying'.

"I shoot a test of the whole movie before I make a movie. So we just shot a test."

While he has already shot a test, the cast that appeared in that won't necessarily make the final cut.

He is keen for Michael Shannon to star in alongside Richard Jenkins and Joaquin Phoenix and he also hasn't ruled himself out of appearing in the movie.

As well as directing 'As I Lay Dying', James is also in talks to play opposite Kate Hudson in a Linda Lovelace biopic.

The 32-year-old star has been offered the role of Chuck Traynor, a pornographer who married troubled actress Linda, the star of movie 'Deep Throat', with the lead going to Kate.