Investigative journalism isn't sexy or glamorous. It’s making lots and lots of phone calls to strangers — and to people who don't want to talk to you. It's reading endless boring documents. It's working on stories that don't pan out, or even when they do, often go unnoticed. Which makes the movie “Spotlight” all the more remarkable. It’s about the discovery by a team of investigative reporters at The Boston Globe of pervasive sexual abuse of children by Roman Catholic priests in Boston, the church’s attempt to cover up that scandal, and the eventual realization that this story went way beyond Boston.
“Spotlight” is up for six Oscars, including best original screenplay and best director. Tom McCarthy wrote the screenplay and directed the film. In this extended conversation with Kurt Andersen, McCarthy explains how he went from actor to writer and director, and compares his time playing a crooked reporter in “The Wire” to interviewing the real investigative journalists that broke the Globe’s story.