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Shattered Glass (2003)

PG-13 | | Drama, History | 26 November 2003 (USA)
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The story of a young journalist who fell from grace when it was discovered he fabricated over half of his articles from the publication The New Republic magazine.

Director:

Billy Ray

Writers:

Buzz Bissinger (article) (as H.G. Bissinger), Billy Ray
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 11 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Hayden Christensen ... Stephen Glass
Peter Sarsgaard ... Charles 'Chuck' Lane
Chloë Sevigny ... Caitlin Avey
Rosario Dawson ... Andy Fox
Melanie Lynskey ... Amy Brand
Hank Azaria ... Michael Kelly
Steve Zahn ... Adam Penenberg
Mark Blum ... Lewis Estridge
Simone-Élise Girard ... Catarina Bannier
Chad Donella ... David Bach
Jamie Elman ... Aaron Bluth
Luke Kirby ... Rob Gruen
Cas Anvar ... Kambiz Foroohar
Linda Smith Linda Smith ... Gloria (as Linda E. Smith)
Ted Kotcheff ... Marty Peretz
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Storyline

This film tells the true story of fraudulent Washington, D.C. journalist Stephen Glass (Christensen), who rose to meteoric heights as a young writer in his 20s, becoming a staff writer at "The New Republic" for three years (1995-1998), where 27 of his 41 published stories were either partially or completely made up. Looking for a short cut to fame, Glass concocted sources, quotes and even entire stories, but his deception did not go unnoticed forever, and eventually, his world came crumbling down... Written by Kaliya Warner

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The story that shocked a Nation See more »

Genres:

Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual references and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 November 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shattered Glass See more »

Filming Locations:

Bethesda, Maryland, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$77,540, 2 November 2003

Gross USA:

$2,220,008

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,944,752
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the DVD commentary, the real Charles Lane talks about confronting Stephen Glass in front of a restaurant in which Glass claims to have had dinner with people he featured in a dubious article. Lane's comments occur as this confrontation is dramatized in an exterior shot filmed at the actual location of the restaurant in Bethesda, Md. Lane's comments identify the restaurant as "the Original House of Pancakes." But in the shot, a sign inside the restaurant that is visible through the glass front door shows a logo (a chef flipping a very large pancake above a frying pan) and name which correctly identifies the restaurant as part of the national breakfast-and-lunch franchise, "The Original Pancake House". See more »

Goofs

Stephen reminds Chuck that as an editor he is suppose to support him. Since Stephen is just a staff writer he is in no position to tell the editor what his duties and responsibilities are. See more »

Quotes

Last Title Card: That June, The New Republic printed an apology to its readers, admitting that 27 of the 41 pieces that Stephen Glass had written for the magazine had been either partially or entirely invented.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 2004 IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Wild Thing
Written by Chip Taylor
Performed by X
Used by permission of EMI Blackwood Music Inc.
Courtesy of Elektra Entertainment Group
By Arrangement with Warner Strategic Marketing
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An unspectacular but enjoyable little drama
16 May 2004 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

The New Republic is one of many political comment magazines published out of Washington DC. The writing/editing staff is small and young and includes the humble and friendly Stephen Glass. His stories are often very interesting and outrageous and he starts to attract attention from other magazines for contributions. When writes about an on-line hacker who attacked the website of a large software company he attracts the attention of an internet-based journal and writer Adam Penenberg who gets attacked by his editor for missing the story. However, as Penenberg starts to look at the facts behind the story he starts to suspect that the story is one large fabrication.

I only vaguely remember the original breaking of this story and am not aware of the full facts behind the story but I was interested enough to go and see this film when it was released at the weekend. The film opens with Glass giving a talk to a class back at his old school where he learnt his trade, this is then used as a tool to give background on both him and the job he does. This works pretty well even if it is a little confusing as to when it is happening (a fact not understood until the end). The main thrust of the film is the gradual exposure of the lies that Glass has been perpetrated within his stories. In this regard it works pretty well as a drama with a good story – made all the more interesting and engaging by being true. It never really ignites into being a thriller and it misses a few opportunities to really be gripping but it still performs well as a good solid film – perhaps it was a decision not to stick in more shouting or acting fireworks, it was the right decision but I'm sure some audiences will expect shouting and fireworks.

The one moment I did feel that the film missed out was where Chuck picks several editions off the shelf and starts to realize the extent of the lies that they have been publishing: that scene wasn't dramatic and it wasn't convincing, that should have been a lot more dramatic – but this is only one scene in the whole film. Like I said, some people will find this film a bit slow and lacking in pace but for me it was the story that drove the film as opposed to theatrical tricks. The cast help the film a great deal, even if many of them are barely more than cameos. Christensen's performance worried me at the start because it seemed to be a bit cheesy but after 15 minutes I realized that this was the point. His Glass is manipulative and deceitful to the point where it is an act that he delivers naturally – it was a difficult character to do and, despite him not being showy, he gets it bang on and he delivers the same character throughout while just allowing the audience's perception of him to change. Sarsgaard actually turns out to have the lion's share of the film and he gets the showiest moments of shouting – he is good and acts as our eyes. Sevingy is a real good actress and does well with her few scenes. The rest of the cast is well padded with famous faces who all deliver well with the little they have. Azaria is good and is given a good character (who died in real life covering the war in Iraq), Zahn manages to not be an annoying pr*ck – a feat in itself, but Dawson's presence was a mystery to me. She has very little to do other that be pretty and show the pressure in her job, but he is barely more than a cameo.

Overall this film lacks fireworks and bases it's slow pace on the facts of the true story and not hammy acting or directing flourishes. In this regard the film is enjoyable if a little slow. It squanders a few changes to make more of an impact but generally it delivers a true story in a manner that is straight but well told. A great cast aren't all used well but are good where it matters while also adding depth. Not the film that Saturday night crowds will be hoping for but a good story well told nonetheless.


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