Author: The JT LeRoy Story | Chicago Reader

Author: The JT LeRoy Story

Directed by Jeff Feuerzeig (The Devil and Daniel Johnston), this documentary is well crafted but suffers from a deeply unsympathetic protagonist: author Laura Albert, who wrote three lionized books under the pseudonym JT LeRoy and duped the literary world by passing off her sister-in-law as the author, supposedly a transgender man an ex-prostitute with HIV. Feuerzeig has gained access to some of Leroy's most famous fans, including Courtney Love, Gus Van Sant, and Billy Corgan; according to the director, Albert recorded her intimate phone conversations with them, in which she posed either as JT or as his manager, and the calls provide an unnerving soundtrack for the film. But in shaping the story from the writer's point of view, Feuerzeig allows Albert to soften her lies and paint herself as the victim. The documentary ends with her recounting a tragic childhood to justify her manipulations, but by then you can't help but wonder if this is just another sob story.

Credits

Director:

  • Jeff Feuerzeig

Cast:

  • Laura Albert
  • Savannah Knoop
  • Winona Ryder
  • Courtney Love

Writer:

  • Jeff Feuerzeig

Producers:

  • Jeff Feuerzeig
  • Danny Gabai
  • Jim Czarnecki
  • Molly Thompson
  • Brett Ratner
  • Robert Sharenow
  • Robert DeBitetto
  • James Packer
  • Marie Guirgis
  • Eddy Moretti
  • Shane Smith
  • Henry S. Rosenthal

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