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in Filmmaking
on Jun 22, 2007

The Antidote Films vs. JT Leroy trial has gone to jury in New York today, and Alan Feuer’s most recent piece in the New York Times touches on what may be the most notable byproduct of the trial.

There’s been discussion in the trial of director Steven Shainberg’s idea to do a “Sarah Plus” version of the Leroy story, blending elements of novel Sarah with the real-life story of its creation by writer Laura Albert. Of course, that would require some kind of purchasable or in the public domain material documenting Albert’s life to pull off.

Writers Feuer:

It is within reason to assume that the commercial value of “Sarah” will rise on the force of the publicity the book has received at trial. There is, however, another situation that might inflate its value even more.

Steven Shainberg, the proposed director of the film, testified that when he learned who had truly written “Sarah” an inspiration came to him to make a “meta-film,” a triple-layered movie that would blend the novel with the lives of its real and purported authors in a project he took to calling “Sarah Plus.”

Of its three required elements — the book, the JT Leroy saga and the inner life of Laura Albert — the latter two have essentially been thrust into the public sphere by testimony at the trial.

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