As we all know, relationships can be pretty difficult if you don’t work at them. And that’s just in the real world. Imagine attempting to keep a relationship together when you’re a celebrity and the entire world happens to be watching. So many different celeb relationships have fallen apart this past year that it’s hard to keep track. But, more importantly, some new relationships have risen from the ashes and have stolen our attention.
One such relationship happens to be that of James Franco and a mystery woman by the name of Isabel Pakzad. We don’t know how or when they happened to meet, we just know that whenever they’re seen out together in public, they look like they’re not only having a great time but that they’re also in love. James himself didn’t have the greatest year last year, so it’s not really surprising that he’s attempting to wipe the slate clean and start fresh with a new love.
While we don’t know too much about her yet, we know that in the future (the longer the two are together) the more facts will pop up about this beautiful Isabel woman who has seemingly stolen the heart of The Disaster Artist actor. Here are 15 facts we have gathered about this brand new couple.
Why are some people just now hearing about the pairing of these two allusive people? Perhaps because they don’t want you to. According to Daily Mail, the two actually started dating a while back 2017 but have been extremely low key about it. Sure, there are tons of pictures of the two out and about around different cities, but if you pay close attention to interviews, you won’t hear either of them, especially Franco who is in the public eye more frequently, go into detail about each other. Franco managed to drop her first name maybe once or twice over the past few months, but that’s about it. Recently, he’s just been on the mend when it comes to doing the late night talk show circuit. Usually, when a couple is secretive about their relationship, they tend to stay together longer. This could be why both James and Isabel are remaining mum about the status of their relationship – they don’t want to ruin a good thing. And who can blame them? The more a couple is in the spotlight, the harder it appears to be on the relationship. And since the relationship is still somewhat new, who can blame them? It’s best just to keep it low key in the beginning stages.
No man in the history of the world assumes he’s “a bad boyfriend” and actively doesn’t attempt to change that. James, of course, is one of those people. Franco opened up to Variety recently that he had been a less-than-stellar boyfriend to his exes in the past and was looking to change that. “There was one instance, this old girlfriend was visiting me in New York,” the actor said. “I had come out here for school. My cat had scratched her in the eye. I had so much work to get done for the next day, I didn’t take her to the hospital. I had my assistant take her. That moment haunted me so much. What kind of selfish, self-centered boyfriend are you?” Self-awareness is a very important key when it comes to having a healthy relationship, so the fact that James is self-aware about his previous relationships in the past when it comes to his bad boyfriend behavior is a huge plus for Isabel. He wants to right his wrongs and doesn’t want to mess up as bad as he did in past relationships. All we can hope these days when it comes to Isabel is that James’ cat has somewhere picked up same proper manners (or had the cat declawed, perhaps).
Recently, James opened up to Variety about how he’s trying to change his life for the better – meaning it was time for him to get rid of everything that was holding him back, including being a bad boyfriend, as he put it. He told a story about how he started doing this by sticking by Isabel when she got sick early on in their relationship. While she accompanied him to the San Sebastian Film Festival in September, she developed a throat infection and he accompanied her to the hospital where she was treated. James really doesn’t seem like the type to simply hop into a relationship or take it casually for just anyone. He was in a committed, five-year relationship with his co-star on the 1999 movie Whatever It Takes Marla Sokoloff. After that relationship fizzled out, he jumped into another long-term relationship with actress Ahna O’Reilly up until 2011. Sure, he dated briefly before then, but it’s clear that James seems more like a “long-term relationship” sort of person, which is good for Isabel if that’s what she happens to be looking for. At least, for now, she knows she can count on him to stick by her side when things get uneasy in the health department.
Clearly, education is important to James. For those of you who don’t know, the actor Franco is also known as Professor Franco in a lot of circles. James has taught screenplay/creative writing at UCLA and USC in Southern California and has also taught at Columbia and NYU. LA Weekly happened to interview one of his students who was eager to spill the tea about his famous professor. “I would say it’s both,” Nicolas Curicio, a student of Franco’s answered when asked what drew him to the class – the subject of creative writing or the fact that Franco is famous. “I read his short stories when they came out and a lot of people don’t really like his writing but I think that he took creating writing classes here as well and that he is kind of in the same type of genre writing that I really like, which is kind of that new contemporary, dirty new Bukowski era of writing.” Isabel herself is currently a graduate student at the University of Southern California (where Franco has taught) and is getting her Masters in Integrated Design, Business, and Technology. That’s a pretty heavy workload, but judging by her past resume, she appears to be able to handle the challenge.
Some of us always get jealous when we’re breezing over random Instagram accounts and see the subjects prancing along some exotic beach in a faraway land. Isabel Pakzad happens to be one such subject. Her Instagram feed is crawling with pictures of her smiling on different beaches with different friends, of her smiling on a balcony overlooking a beautiful city, her posing in front of Westminster Abbey, her looking stunning in Dubai. She certainly doesn’t seem to stay put in one place. One thing we do wonder though is if James has also gone to these places with her. It’s easy to believe that Isabel most likely takes these different trips during her spring and summer breaks – at least that’s what she did before Franco stepped into the beautifully lit picture. We all know that actors have to travel the globe (depending on what project they’re currently working on) and while Franco has recently been focused on working on the second season of The Deuce, he has a lot of projects that will be coming out this year and in the future. Hopefully, these will take him to an exotic location where Isabel can take some more gorgeous photographs - if she goes with him, of course. Hopefully, in the future, she won’t have to be so secretive and cut a certain “mystery person” out of her pictures.
These days, Instagram “modeling” has become a thing among millennials – so much so that most now are aspiring to grow up and take it on as a profession of sorts. I mean, if some celebrities can do it – why can’t the average joe or jane? Well, truth be told, most of the celebs that we deem to be “Instagram models” were already famous to begin with. For example, Forbes magazine actually named Kendall Jenner the highest-paid model in the world and that’s WITH her Instagram feed. Usually, models like Jenner, Kim Kardashian, Kylie Jenner (well, all of the Kardashian family really) earn money each time they advertise a product in one of their Instagram posts – it’s how Instagram models make some of their money. And now that Isabel is becoming a household name thanks to James, chances are she’ll be earning a lot more money with each post in the near future. Recently, she posted a full-length photo of her wearing a Dior evening gown while standing next to someone (whom she cut out…. We’re all pretty sure we know who that someone is…). “Thank you for the attire @julezbryant & @dior” Isabel wrote in the caption underneath the photo. Have to wonder if she earned any money for that specific shout out?
When a new boyfriend/girlfriend enters the picture, sometimes meeting the family can be an entirely stressful event. Back in early November when the news broke that James and Isabel were a couple, she accompanied him to the IndieWire Honors in West Hollywood where an insider caught her chatting it up with James’ little brother and sometimes acting partner Dave Franco. “Isabel hugged Dave and hung out with him for a while and they seemed chummy, very close,” the insider told Us magazine. This is a huge plus for the girl when it comes to getting along with the boyfriend’s family. And, from the sound of it, judging on her comfort level, that she’s been around Dave before. Both he and Dave starred in The Disaster Artist last year and are a pretty close pair. “When I first started acting I did make a conscious choice to distance myself from his work-wise just because I wanted to paint my own path, not be referred to as James Franco’s little brother for the rest of my life,” Dave told The Business Insider. “But after a while, it just got to the point where I was like “he’s my brother and I love him and I respect him.”
There was a great deal of controversy surrounding James Franco last year around the time he was nominated for The Disaster Artist. Various women spoke out when Franco walked the Golden Globe red carpet wearing a #TimesUp pin, reminding people that Franco himself has been accused of certain allegations from some women. When he went on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, he attempted to clear the air a little bit. “The things I heard are not accurate, but I completely support people coming out because they didn’t have a voice for so long,” the actor told Colbert in a candid interview, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “If I’ve done something wrong, I will fix it. I have to. I don’t know what else to do. As far as the bigger issue of how we do it, I really don’t have the answers. I think the point of this whole thing is that we listen. I’m here to listen and learn and change my perspective where it’s off. I’m completely willing and want to.” Because of the allegations, Franco was not nominated for his role in The Disaster Artist (even though he won a Golden Globe) at the Academy Awards. Isabel appears to have stuck by his side throughout the entire ordeal, and their relationship seems stronger than ever.
Ah, the social media thing again. These days, we usually know when two people are just more than friends based on their social media feeds. They change their relationship statuses on Facebook or post super cute photos of each other enjoying “date night” on Instagram. Either way, there are always signs that a person is in a committed relationship based solely on their social media accounts. However, this isn’t the case with Isabel and James. First and foremost, James deleted his Instagram account shortly after the controversy began to surround him. “It’s very liberating,” James said about quitting Instagram. “I just got rid of it. When I first got on, it just felt silly. I treated it like it was a joke. You get in that weird seductive space where it feels private, but it’s also public. And you get hooked on the reaction.” Isabel, on the other hand, has her Instagram very active, but you see no trace of James anywhere on her feed (we’re ignoring that picture where it looks like she cut him out). However, there are traces of the couple on OTHER people’s feeds, like the account where the above picture appears, which shows the couple smiling and posing with surfboards before (or after) a surf lesson.
This appears to be a big question in both of their lives: how serious is this couple? As we know, James doesn’t really like to have short-term flings it appears, based on his past romantic history, so it seems it’s time he’s overdue for one. Isabel has stuck by his side through a lot of controversies last year and early this year, and to stick beside someone during such a dark time is serious couple worthy. Though the one thing that may attempt to get in the middle of their relationship is their busy work (and school) schedules. Franco is a method actor who likes to really throw himself into his acting roles, which may mess with his personal life a tad – especially when he’s dating a girl who isn’t an actor herself (we'll get more into that in a sec). When it comes to her and her working toward her Masters in a couple different fields, it may just as difficult to keep a long-term relationship going. What we do know about the couple is they enjoy going places with each other, and are not afraid to be seen by the paparazzi doing mundane things like grabbing a cup of coffee or an ice cream cone together. That certainly appears to be “serious” relationship stuff.
Handling the press should be an Olympic event for celebrities. Especially when they’re a young couple in a new relationship. People everywhere always want to know “who are they dating” when it comes to high profile celebrities who happen to be single for a certain period of time. Whenever any of the Kardashians or Jenners happens to be single, the press is constantly stalking them in a desperate attempt to figure out if there is a potential new love in their life. And when a relatively famous person happens to start dating an unknown, non-famous person, the press automatically jumps to conclusions in order to appease their readers. This can often make the non-famous person uncomfortable since they’re not used to all the attention that suddenly being thrown at them – which is why you don’t really see a famous celebrity involved with someone who is not in the entertainment industry. However, when it comes to Isabel, she appears to always be cool under pressure based on the photos that the press likes to take of her when she’s out with James. She’s constantly smiling and laughing, appearing as if she’s completely oblivious to the fact that strangers are taking pictures of her. It’s really refreshing to see.
Sure, in the first stages of a new relationship (what everyone likes to refer to as “The Honeymoon Phase” a couple can appear deliriously happy – which is what it appears the phase that Isabel and James are currently in. Only, they’ve appeared to be dating quite a while now (in Hollywood time, of course) and yet they still appear to be just as in love as the first time they stepped out in front of the press together. Even during award show season. She was caught beaming with pride and joy at the Indiewire Honors when Franco won his award for The Disaster Artist. “[When James received his award] Isabel got a huge smile on her face,” an onlooker told Us magazine. “She cocked her head to get a better viewpoint and applauded a lot during his speech and giggled at his jokes. She had a huge grin on her face and seemed absolutely smitten with him.” Another curious onlooker also took note of the scene when the couple was seen grabbing lunch in a group setting later that week. “They were sitting pretty close to each other and they seemed really happy.” If they look at each other in private the way they look at each other while in public, they truly are happy with each other.
As we now know, Isabel is currently in the process of obtaining her Masters at USC but apparently before, she was actually at TV publicist, according to the celebscloset.com. On top of that, she also attended and is an alumni of Penn State where she obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Arts and majored in Public Relations and Advertising. At a delicate age (she's 25-years-old - 15 years James' junior) she's already worked special events at Davos Brands New York, Warner Bros, CBS Films, PMK, Penn State Network Television, Universal Music Group, and Pennsylvania Sony Pictures. While we know some of James' dating history (which are usually with other actresses), it's interesting to see him starting to get serious with a publicist rather, someone who has done work as a publicist), especially when there is still somewhat of a controversy surrounding him. What a publicist actually does is put out fires for a particular client in order to maintain a good standing with the public and the press. And a great publicist will know how to put out some pretty big fires. But! She is not his publicist (as far as anyone knows) and appears to be just in a relationship with him. So let's not start wagging our tongues just yet.
As most of us know, it can be pretty hard to maintain a healthy relationship while continuing to pursue our own educations. And it appears as if Isabel has a heavy school workload as she goes for her Master's degree at USC (as we said before) and considering her background at Penn State and her previous work experience as a TV publicist, she has a very stern and steady head on her shoulders. She's no dummy - not in the least. She appears to be the type who wouldn't give up her education in order to maintain a relationship with an actor because it appears she's able to juggle both her school, work, and fun (especially her traveling, as we can see on Instagram). Judging by her age, she's most likely VERY close to graduating, and so far she has kept rather mum about the relationship itself and hasn't spoken to anyone that has come forward to offer up details about the duo. Considering her background, who knows if she'll end up wanting to get a higher degree of sorts in her field, or perhaps just jump right into work. Either way, her intellect appears to be completely off the charts.
The life of an actor is always a hectic one. And with all that Franco is trying to leave behind him in the dust, his schedule seems plenty packed. In the midst of all the controversy, James appears to be diving head first into work, which may suit academic Isabel just fine as she works to obtain her Master's. Currently, Franco has five completed works that are coming out in 2018 that he has to go on the road to promote (Mississippi Requiem, Future World, Kin, The Pretenders, and Kill the Czar), three more that are in post-production (The Long Home, Zeroville, Arctic Justice), one that is filming (Naya Legend of the Golden Dolphin) and one that has just recently been announced (Multiple Men) according to IMDB. So, already, he had to have been in the process of filming some of those when their relationship first started, so him continuing to work a rigorous schedule shouldn't be that much of a problem for the busy student. And clearly, it's managed to stay alive through much tougher times recently, so being apart hopefully won't weigh much on him - especially if she's about ready to enter summer break. Who knows what the future holds for them? But right now, they seem to truly be living it up in bliss.