EXCLUSIVE: In January 2015, journalist Courtney Shea exposed the story of how “one Canadian con artist swindled his way into the jet-set.” Several years later, that twisted tale has become the documentary The Talented Mr. Rosenberg, which will make its world premiere as part of the just-revealed lineup for the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto.
The film, directed by Barry Avrich, revolves around Albert Rosenberg, who might best be described as a cross between “Tinder Swindler” Simon Leviev and Bernie Madoff. In the trailer, posted exclusively here, Rosenberg speaks for himself, telling the director, “When I think about it most of the times wishing that I didn’t do the things that I did and wondering why I did them, basically, I wish I could start over again.”
Rosenberg purported to be a titled Swiss billionaire and took to dating sites to meet women whom he allegedly fleeced of their savings. He also allegedly conducted a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors. Even his own daughter characterizes him in the most disparaging terms.
“He is a criminal,” she says in the trailer, “and extremely abusive.”
Avrich, founder of Melbar Entertainment Group, directed and produced.
“We’re proud to have our world premiere at Hot Docs,” Avrich told Deadline. “We are living in a world of schemers, scammers, and con artists, and most of us think we are too clever to fall victim to a Ponzi, Madoff, or Rosenberg. Think again.”
Shea, the journalist, produced the documentary, alongside Avrich, Caitlin Cheddie, and Mark Selby. The Talented Mr. Rosenberg will have its Canadian broadcast premiere in fall 2022 under the CBC’s Passionate Eye banner.
Watch the trailer above.
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