José Angel Santana — who taught Franco in his “Directing the Actor” class — is now suing the University for his job back, claiming he was wrongfully terminated … simply because he gave Franco a low grade.
According to the lawsuit, Santana dropped the D on Franco for missing 12 of the 14 classes in the MFA course. No shocker, considering the pic TMZ posted back in 2009 … showing Franco passed out at one of his Columbia classes.
When people found out that Santana gave Franco a D, Santana claims he suffered all sorts of public humiliation — at the hands of James Franco … and the University itself, which ultimately fired him.
Santana said he was the only professor with the cojones to give Franco a bad grade — insisting other teachers played favorites with Franco, including fellow professor Jay Anania … who Franco hired to write and direct the film “Shadows & Lies.”
Santana groused, “In my opinion, they’ve turned the NYU graduate film degree into swag for James Franco’s purposes, a possession, something you can buy.”
Santana told the Post, “The university has done everything in its power to curry favor with James Franco.”