Author provokes all the questions of authorship through the illuminating and unbelievable case study of JT Leroy: the renegade literary prodigy, whose real life as a queer-teen-hustler seemed to flawlessly spill into his prose. JT was lauded 'this generation's Burroughs', loved by Dennis Hopper and Winona Ryder, and the era-defining literary rockstar attracted an unprecedented buzz for a decade.
In 2006, after a reporter heard repeatedly of his elusive behaviour from different cultural figures, it was discovered JT Leroy was also, in fact, Laura Albert, an unpublished writer, punk, and phone-sex operator. A fascinating and shape-shifting intellect, Albert was able to ‘be’ JT for over a decade over the phone: publishing work, cultivating strong and significant friendships with those in the literary sphere, and eventually hiring an actor, her fiance’s sister Savannah, to ‘be’ JT in public.
The riveting Author sees Albert give her own perspective, proving herself to be a charming storyteller and fascinating subject, and in doing so reveals prejudices of the literary world. This is a story that illuminates the fascinating ways in which one can navigate identity, truth and fiction, and provokes the questions: whose right is it to identify us? whose is identity to play with?
Presented in partnership with East End Film Festival