JT Leroy “Fraud” Tab Raised by $350K

By Neal Comment

laura-albert-courthouse.jpgThree weeks ago, Antidote Films claimed that suing Laura Albert over the “fraud” of her selling the film rights to the “JT Leroy” novel Sarah thad cost the production company more than a million dollars in legal fees and other expenses—at which point, I observed, “Assuming Jeffrey Levy-Hinte is telling the truth about how much money he spent, Albert might not be the one who defrauded him.”

NYT reporter Alan Feuer is similarly skeptical—and the fact that he can’t contain his cynicism makes his account of the judge’s ruling on the fees is a delight to read. As Antidote insists that it paid out all that money to attorneys in order to challenge “one of the biggest literary hoaxes of all time,” you can practically see Feuer’s eyes rolling, and one suspects, professional objectivity notwithstanding, he had to pull his fingers away from the keyboard not to follow the final word from Antidote’s head attorney—”Neither Jeff nor I want to ruin Laura Albert… We just want her to behave with a little more integrity”—with an obvious rejoinder about the film biz.

Anyway, the final ruling was that Albert owes Antidote a total of $350,000 in legal fees and other costs, in addition to the $116,000 in damages from the original jury verdict.