Author: The JT Le Roy Story
Director: Jeff Feuerzeig
Country of Origin: USA 2015 mins.
Released by Dogwoof
The JT LeRoy literary hoax is fact stranger than fiction. The opening shot of a gushing Winona Ryder says it all. The hoax was in place with celebs and an adoring public in awe of the new literary giant. But who was the mysterious JT LeRoy ? Jeff Feuerzeig's documentary is riveting viewing as JT LeRoy, or should I say Laura Albert, relates her story in the first person with backup celeb friends heard on phone recordings.
A telephone call to Dr Owen on a San Francisco Adolescent Services Crisis line, from 13-year-old 'Terminator' who later merged into JT LeRoy, a HIV positive, transgender male ex-prostitute set the hoax off. He fell for it. Write about relationships with people -'write it entirely for yourself'. 'Sarah,' a work of fiction with an assumed autobiographical touch was published in 1999 and opened the door to the world of rock stars, fashion, and show biz Hollywood. The mysterious JT LeRoy, literary maverick, never seen in a live interview, had made it. The hoax was in place.
Bubbles burst and In 2005 New York's Magazine's October issue claimed it had unmasked JT, who didn't exist. Gasps of disbelief from the faithful echoed long and loud. JT LeRoy, an elaborate con or a victim of circumstances? Flashbacks hint at a troubled childhood but Laura Albert knows how to draw you in.