Full Festival Pass

A Fragile Trust: Plagiarism, Power, and Jayson Blair at the New York Times

  • Director(s):
    Samantha Grant
    Samantha Grant
    • United States
    • 2013
    • 79 min
    • HDCAM 1080/59.94i
    • English

"Why did you do it?", filmmaker Samantha Grant asks point blank from behind the camera. Jayson Blair, a former reporter at the world's leading broadsheet paper, the New York Times, shifts uneasily. "There isn't a simple answer," he mutters. His shot to notoriety in 2003 as a plagiarising journalist was in fact an accumulation of small, incremental steps. It may have started with a fabricated quote or an interview that never took place. Working in a lumbering media establishment that was playing catch-up with the digital age, Jayson took full advantage of the internet from which he sourced most of his information. As suspicion grew, so too did his need to hide the truth, spurring a downward spiral of drugs, alcohol, and mental breakdown. Supported by interviews with reporters, colleagues, and the top editors who were active at the time of the scandal, the film reveals the difficult relationships between power, ambition, hierarchies, and race.



Global Encounters

Official Website:


Associate Producer:
Jessica Jones 
Brittney Shepherd 
Richard Levien 
Justin Melland 

Director Filmography

  • 2008, Ecuador: Flower Power (FRONTLINE/World)
  • 2007, Now Leaving Colorado City: Life After Polygamy
  • 2006, India: A Pound of Flesh (FRONTLINE/World)


Samantha Grant

Owner / Director

Gush Productions


+1 4155189395



15 Jun 15:30

Showroom 2
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16 Jun 13:00

Showroom 2
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