Cover art for podcast Based on a True Story

Based on a True Story

162 EpisodesProduced by Dan LeFebvreWebsite

We've all seen the movies that claim to be 'based on a true story', but have you ever wondered how historically accurate they are? That's what we'll aim to find out as we compare Hollywood with history.

episodes iconAll Episodes

Gettysburg with Jim Hessler and Eric Lindblade

July 1st, 2020


Today marks the 157th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863).

How much of the movie's depiction of the battle is historically …

Saving Private Ryan with Marty Morgan

June 6th, 2020


June 6th, 1944. D-Day.

Fast forward 76 years and on June 6th, 2020, we'll chat with author and historian Marty Morgan to separate fact from fiction …

Midway with Craig Symonds

May 25th, 2020


Craig Symonds is the Earnest J. King Professor of Maritime History at the Naval War College as well as Professor Emeritus of History at the U.S. …

Alexander with Ryan Stitt

May 11th, 2020


Ryan Stitt is the host of The History of Ancient Greece Podcast, and he joins us today to separate fact from the fiction in the 2004 movie Alexander.

Subscribe to Ryan's podcast:

Mutiny on the Bounty with Brandon Huebner

April 28th, 2020


1962's Mutiny on the Bounty is one of the most popular requests to cover. Today, we'll do that with the help of Brandon Huebner, the host of The …

Les Miserables with Maurice Samuels

April 14th, 2020


Maurice Samuels, Author and Yale's Betty Jane Anlyan Professor of French, joins the Based on a True Story podcast to separate fact from the fiction we saw in 1998's depiction of Les Miserables.

Get your copy of …

Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story with Matthew Polly

April 3rd, 2020


Author Matthew Polly joins the Based on a True Story podcast to separate fact from the fiction we saw in 1993's Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story.

12 Years a Slave with Professor Greg Jackson

March 24th, 2020


Today we'll learn about the historical accuracy of the movie 12 Years a Slave with Professor Greg Jackson from the History That Doesn't Suck podcast.

Subscribe to Greg's podcast here:

Project Blue Book with Rob Kristoffersen

March 11th, 2020


UFO expert Rob Kristoffersen joins Based on a True Story to discuss the historical accuracy of the History Channel's TV show Project Blue Book.

Subscribe to Rob's Our Strange Skies podcast:

Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier with Michael Wallis

February 18th, 2020


Author Michael Wallis joins the Based on a True Story podcast to separate fact from the fiction we saw in Disney's 1955 film Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier.

Michael is the author of the New York Times …

Downton Abbey with Lady Carnarvon

February 3rd, 2020


Downton Abbey was filmed at Highclere Castle, which is Lady Carnarvon's home. On this episode of the Based on a True Story podcast, she'll join us to talk about the historical accuracy of the Downton Abbey movie and TV …

Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves with Dr. Sean McGlynn

January 27th, 2020


There are many versions of Robin Hood's story that have been on the big screen. Today we'll chat with historian Dr. Sean McGlynn about the 1991 classic Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.


Get Dr. McGlynn's book, Robin …

1917 with Doran Cart

January 16th, 2020


Doran Cart is Senior Curator at the National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri. He joins us today to talk about the historical accuracy of the hit blockbuster movie 1917.


Want to learn more?

Visit the …

The Imitation Game with Mark Cotton

January 6th, 2020


Mark is the producer of the official Bletchley Park podcast. He joins us today to discuss the historical accuracy of the 2014 film The Imitation Game and do some fact checking on the original Based on a True Story …

Young Guns with Chris Wimmer

December 27th, 2019


How much do you know about Billy the Kid? On the popular Infamous America podcast, Chris Wimmer has dug deep into the life of one of most famous …

Christmas Special 2019 with Heather LeFebvre

December 1st, 2019


As the Christmas season approaches, let's take a step back from the hustle and bustle to learn about the history and festivities over the millennia …

First Man

November 20th, 2019


Our story today is as close to traveling through time and space as we can without a single mention of the Doctor. That's because today we're going to travel back in time to discuss the true story of Neil Armstrong as we …

The Crucible

November 4th, 2019


The story of the Salem witch trials was brought to the world's spotlight thanks to Arthur Miller's play The Crucible. Today, we'll look at the historical accuracy of the 1996 movie based on that play.


Find the links …

Tombstone with Chris Wimmer

October 26th, 2019


Today (October 26th) is the anniversary of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Chris Wimmer is the Host and Producer of the Legends of the Old West podcast. He joins us today to separate fact from the fiction of the events …

Tolkien with John Garth

October 4th, 2019


Historian and Tolkien scholar John Garth breaks down the historical accuracy of the 2019 biopic about the life of J.R.R. Tolkien simply called Tolkien

Tag with Tag Brothers Patrick and Joe

September 17th, 2019


The story behind 2018's Tag seems almost too ridiculous to be true. What better way to separate fact from fiction than by chatting with some of the …

Turn: Washington's Spies with Michael Troy

August 18th, 2019


In a first for Based on a True Story, today we'll chat about the TV series Turn: Washington Spies. Joining me to dive behind the history of the …

Mary Queen of Scots

August 1st, 2019


The story of Mary Stuart and her cousin Queen Elizabeth I is one that's been told many times over. We've looked at the story from Elizabeth's side …

Cleopatra with Dr. Zahi Hawass

July 9th, 2019


Today I'm honored to be joined by the renowned Dr. Zahi Hawass to learn more about how much of the 1963 classic film Cleopatra was historically accurate.


Find Dr. Zahi Hawass online at:



June 24th, 2019


This isn't a normal episode of Based on a True Story. Let's take a few moments to chat about some of the changes coming to the podcast.

Questions or concerns?

Reach out to me at

Loving Vincent

June 17th, 2019


Today's episode will talk about the renowned artist Vincent van Gogh as depicted in the movie Loving Vincent.


Find the show notes at  


Enjoy this week's …

The Longest Day with Marty Morgan

June 3rd, 2019


D-Day was June 6th, 1944. The 75th anniversary is this week, and if there's one movie that has changed the perception of the invasion it's The Longest Day. So, we'll chat with author and historian Marty Morgan to find …


May 20th, 2019


Today we'll travel back in time to the days of Greek mythology as we compare the 2004 movie Troy with history.   Find the show notes at

Eight Men Out

May 6th, 2019


This is the story of the 1919 Black Sox scandal that rocked the world of Major League Baseball.   Find the show notes at   


Enjoy this week's episode? Based …


April 22nd, 2019


It's been called a rags to riches story, and an inspiration to millions. But how much of 2003's Seabiscuit actually happened? Let's find out!

Find more resources at 

The Perfect Storm

April 8th, 2019


Sometimes, Hollywood exaggerates nature's fury on screen. Today, we'll learn about one of the stories that reminds us how scary it can really be.

The Return of the King

April 1st, 2019


Two years ago, we covered The Fellowship of the Ring as an April Fools Day surprise. Last year, it was a little less of a surprise when we …

Malcolm X

March 25th, 2019


Today we'll learn about Malcolm X, the man whose childhood saw his family get attacked by the KKK to an adulthood where he turned to robbery and …


March 11th, 2019


Last episode we learned about Oliver Stone's 1991 film JFK. This week we'll learn about the 2016 film LBJ that covers President Lyndon Baines Johnson, the man who became President the moment John F. Kennedy was …


February 25th, 2019


To say Oliver Stone's 1991 film JFK caused a lot of controversy is an understatement. With all the conspiracies circling the assassination of President Kennedy, let's take some time to compare JFK to history.


Find …

Bohemian Rhapsody

February 11th, 2019


Rami Malek stars in the blockbuster film about Freddie Mercury's life. Since it's release, there have been many reviews who have dinged the film for its historical accuracy. Are they right? Let's compare history with …

The Catcher Was a Spy

January 28th, 2019


Going from Major League Baseball player to spy isn't your average change in jobs. But then, Moe Berg wasn't your average baseball player. Let's dig into Moe's life as we compare The Catcher Was a Spy with history.


Minisode: Aladdin

January 21st, 2019


As a special treat, you'll get access to one of the minisodes that are normally exclusive to Based on a True Story patrons on the weeks between …

The Greatest Showman (Revisited)

January 14th, 2019


A couple years ago, we covered The Greatest Showman as a pre-release episode. In other words, the podcast episode came out before the movie did. In that episode, we learned about the life of P.T. Barnum. In this …

All the President's Men

December 31st, 2018


President Nixon's resignation in 1974 was the first time for a U.S. president. That same year, Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein released their book that went into detail how they broke the …

A Christmas Carol

December 24th, 2018


Last week on the podcast, we learned all about the life of Charles Dickens as it was told in the movie The Man Who Invented Christmas. While that’s …

The Man Who Invented Christmas

December 17th, 2018


It's time to get in the Christmas spirit! The subject of our episode today is the 2017 movie about Charles Dickens and his writing of A Christmas …

Finding Neverland

December 3rd, 2018


The 2004 film Finding Neverland stars Johnny Depp as J.M. Barrie, the author of Peter Pan. How much of the movie was true and how much was changed? Let's find out...

Find sources, resources, and more to dive deeper into …


November 19th, 2018


In his first movie after Lord of the Rings, Viggo Mortensen portrays Frank T. Hopkins as he rides on his horse, Hidalgo, in The Ocean of Fire long-distance race. How much of the movie really happened? Let's find out...


Rob Roy with Moxie LaBouche

November 5th, 2018


Called the Scottish Robin Hood, Rob Roy's story has been the subject of books and movies. Today, one of the most popular renditions of that is the …

Professor Marston and the Wonder Women

October 22nd, 2018


After inventing the lie detector test, William Moulton Marston came up with the character of Wonder Woman. His inspiration was his wife Elizabeth, …


October 8th, 2018


Today marks the 51st anniversary of revolutionary Che Guevara's capture that led to his death. How much do you know of his story?

Let's find out as …

Empire of the Sun

September 24th, 2018


Author J.G. Ballard wrote the novel Empire of the Sun based on his own childhood. That's the first level of creative difference between truth and fiction. By the time it was adapted for the big screen, there were bound …

United 93

September 10th, 2018


The world changed on Tuesday, September 11th, 2001. Today, we'll honor the memory of those who lost their lives that day as we look at the historical accuracy of the movie United 93.

Learn more about this story with …

Elizabeth: The Golden Age

August 27th, 2018


On episode 106, we learned about the movie Elizabeth. That's the first of two movies in a series, so we're heading back to the time of Queen …

Rabbit-Proof Fence

August 13th, 2018


When three girls are taken from their homes, they risk their lives to find the rabbit-proof fence in Australia and walk home over a thousand miles away.

Learn more about this story with more resources at:

Communion with Rob Kristoffersen

July 30th, 2018


Dive into the world of the supernatural as I'm joined by UFO expert Rob Kristoffersen to chat about Whitley Strieber's experience that we saw in the movie Communion.


Show notes at 

Goodbye Christopher Robin

July 16th, 2018


How much do you know about the story behind Winnie the Pooh? Let's dive into the beloved children's stories as we compare history with the movie Goodbye Christopher Robin.

Check out more resources for this episode at

The Ghost and the Darkness

July 2nd, 2018


The Ghost and the Darkness tells the story of the man-eaters of Tsavo as they terrified railway workers in 1898. Did it really happen? Let's find out.

Check out more resources for this episode at

Sergeant York

June 18th, 2018


Learn more about World War I Medal of Honor recipient who was the subject of the 1941 Gary Cooper film simply called Sergeant York.

Check out more resources for this episode at 


June 4th, 2018


Producer Melissa requested we cover the movie Elizabeth, so pack your bags and travel back in time to the days just after King Henry VIII as we compare the movie with history.

Check out more resources for this episode …

Black Hawk Down

May 21st, 2018


When Hollywood covers the Battle of Mogadishu, how much of what we see is accurate? That's what Based on a True Story Producer Brian wanted to know …


May 21st, 2018


The term "housekeeping" in a podcast refers to the parts at the beginning or end of a show where the host makes announcements and updates. With the podcast coming back, I'll outline some of the changes as we peel back …

Lowell LeFebvre

April 23rd, 2018


One month ago today, my father passed away unexpectedly. As this podcast is something I do in my spare time, there are more important things going to eat up that time. For now, it's time to take a step back from the …


April 16th, 2018


When President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, a family was left without a father. A wife without her husband. That's the scenario behind the 2016 Jackie, and the subject of this week's episode.

Help me keep the …

The Last of the Mohicans

April 9th, 2018


For generations, James Fenimore Cooper's classic American novel has been recreated in various forms for the big and small screen. As a novel, it's not entirely factual and yet it's a film many consider to be true by its …

King Arthur

April 2nd, 2018


To celebrate the show's anniversary and episode 100, we'll be looking at a story that's special to me...that of King Arthur. We can't hope to cover everything about Arthur that's been written for thousands of years in a …

The Two Towers

April 1st, 2018


Surprise! Enjoy April Fools Day with this special bonus episode as we continue our look at The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Find books, articles and …

Pirates of Silicon Valley

March 26th, 2018


Mac vs PC. It's a flame war that's fueled by people on both sides who love to hate the other side. How did it all start? We'll find out as we dig into the true story behind Pirates of Silicon Valley.

Find books, …

Bonnie and Clyde

March 19th, 2018


The 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde was one of the films that many consider to be the starting point for the taming of violence in mainstream Hollywood. …

The Monuments Men

March 12th, 2018


Did the Nazis really steal all that artwork we saw George Clooney, Matt Damon and Bill Murray chase after in The Monuments Men? That's what we'll find out this week.

Learn more about the true story and more at

Sweet Dreams

March 5th, 2018


Today is the 55th anniversary of the surprise death of country music legend Patsy Cline. In honor of her life, let's learn more about it as we compare history with the 1985 biopic, Sweet Dreams.

Learn more about the …


February 26th, 2018


The 1997 animated film Anastasia tells a beautifully touching tale of the Grand Duchess trying to find her family...but how much of the story we see …

BONUS: From Hell and the Historical Context

February 19th, 2018


This week we learned about Jack the Ripper's brutal murders. After you listen to the regular episode, this bonus episode will help us get a little …

From Hell

February 19th, 2018


Jack the Ripper was a serial killer before the term was coined. Be warned, today's episode contains some very disturbing content about the murders...check it out before listening with kids.

Learn more about the true …

The Other Boleyn Girl

February 12th, 2018


2008's The Other Boleyn Girl gives us a peek into what it could've been like roaming the English court during King Henry VIII's reign. But how much …

The Hindenburg

February 5th, 2018


It was an event that was compared to the sinking of the Titanic, except when the Hindenburg crashed it was caught on film...ending the promising industry of commercial airship travel. This week we're comparing history …

The Founder

January 29th, 2018


How much of Michael Keaton's 2016 masterpiece is true to the history of McDonald's rise to the top of the fast-food industry?

Learn more about the true story and more at

The Man in the Iron Mask

January 22nd, 2018


In a highly requested episode, this week we're focusing on the film starring a young Leonardo DiCaprio heading up an all-star cast in this classic interpretation of the Alexandre Dumas classic.

Learn more about the true …

Birth of the Dragon

January 15th, 2018


It was an epic fight between two martial arts masters...Bruce Lee and Wong Jack Man. But how much of the film that was inspired by this true event is actually true?

Learn more about the true story and more at

Hawmps! with Scott Rank

January 8th, 2018


Ever heard of the U.S. Cavalry's attempts at replacing horses with camels? Historian, author and podcaster Scott Rank joins me on this episode to learn more about this little-known event in U.S. history.

Check out …

The Lost City of Z

January 1st, 2018


Happy New Year! Pack your backs for our first adventure of the year. We're headed to the Amazon today as we compare history with The Lost City of Z.


Learn more about the true story, read the transcript and more at

Christmas Special 2017

December 25th, 2017


Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas! With today being Christmas, I wanted to do something a little different and share a few classic holiday tales to …

The Greatest Showman

December 18th, 2017


Just in time for Christmas day, a new film being released tells the story of a young P.T. Barnum's rise to riches. But who was the real P.T. Barnum and how did he really begin the "greatest show on earth"?


Learn more …

Becoming Jane

December 11th, 2017


Jane Austen's relationship with Tom Lefroy was something we saw on screen during the 2007 film Becoming Jane. But was it real, or just a fictional story? Let's find out.


Learn more about the true story, read the …

Pearl Harbor and Tora! Tora! Tora! with Corey Constable

December 4th, 2017


December 7th is Pearl Harbor Day, and the perfect day to watch a movie in remembrance of that day. Which one should you watch? This week I'm joined …

Kingdom of Heaven

November 27th, 2017


Today is the 922nd anniversary of Pope Urban II preaching the Crusades. That's why we're going back to the 12th century this week to learn the true …

Das Boot

November 20th, 2017


Even today, Das Boot is seen as one of the defining films to showcase what World War II was like for German submariners. But was it true? That's what we'll aim to find out in this episode.


Learn more about the true …

Darkest Hour

November 13th, 2017


In a couple of weeks, the movie Darkest Hour will dive into the life of Winston Churchill. With that in mind, let's do our own dive into the life of …

Grace of Monaco

November 6th, 2017


Nicole Kidman stars as actress Grace Kelly in a film that tells the story of her transition from Hollywood royalty to actual royalty as the Princess …

The Mothman Prophecies with Sam Fredrickson

October 30th, 2017


Happy Halloween! To get in the spirit of the season, this week I'll be joined by Sam Fredrickson from the Not Alone podcast as we dive into what really happened surrounding The Mothman Prophecies.

Get the show notes at


October 23rd, 2017


Loving was released in 2016 and depicts the story of Richard and Mildred Loving as they struggled against racial barriers. Their case, Loving v …

The Right Stuff

October 16th, 2017


The 1983 film The Right Stuff is considered by many to be an epic masterpiece. Before the Apollo program, The Right Stuff tells the story of the …

Mata Hari

October 9th, 2017


We're diving into the classics this week as we compare history with Mata Hari. Released in 1931, Mata Hari tells the story of the woman who many considered to be one of the most dangerous spies during World War I.


Get …

Flash of Genius

October 2nd, 2017


If you're a fan of history, 2008's Flash of Genius tells the story about something that probably never even crossed your mind. One man's journey to inventing the intermittent windshield wiper and how the huge car …

Enemy at the Gates

September 25th, 2017


Get a look at a different angle of World War II as we compare the 2001 film Enemy at the Gates with history.


Get the transcript and full show notes …

Ip Man

September 18th, 2017


If you're a fan of Kung Fu movies, Ip Man is one you've already seen. If you think everything you saw on the screen actually happened, you might be …


September 11th, 2017


Formula One racing in the 1970s was about more than just fast cars. This week we'll compare history with the 2013 Ron Howard movie Rush.

Get the …


September 4th, 2017


Spies and espionage between Russia and the USA. It almost seems like it could be a subject in today's headlines, but on this week's episode we'll …

Lawless with Matt Bondurant

August 28th, 2017


Matt Bondurant joins us on this week's episode as we compare what really happened with the movie Lawless. Matt's grandfather, Jack, and two grand-uncles that were the inspiration for his book that the movie is based on, …

The Ten Commandments (Part 2)

August 21st, 2017


This week we'll conclude our look into the historical accuracy of Cecil B. DeMille's classic film, The Ten Commandments. 

Get the transcript and full …

The Ten Commandments (Part 1)

August 14th, 2017


With almost four hours of movie and plenty of religious subject matter to cover, we'll have to split this movie up into two parts to do it justice. On this episode we'll cover all the way up until the movie's …


August 7th, 2017


2016's Genius tells the story of book editor Max Perkins and the authors he discovered, including Thomas Wolfe, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest …

A Few Good Men

July 31st, 2017


Can you handle the truth? This week we'll see how much of A Few Good Men we can compare with history.

Get the transcript and full show notes at

Cool Runnings

July 24th, 2017


Jamaica we have a bobsled team! Every sports fan loves the story of an underdog's rise to success. Disney's Cool Runnings is that and more. But is it …


July 17th, 2017


Political mutiny and clandestine plots against Adolf Hitler are the subject of this week's episode as we compare history with 2008's Valkyrie.

Get …


July 10th, 2017


Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk comes out on July 21st, but before it does let's take a moment to learn the true story so you can judge the film's …

The Patriot

July 3rd, 2017


July 4th is America's birthday, and this week we'll honor that as we compare history with Mel Gibson's epic Hollywood blockbuster, The Patriot.

Get …


June 26th, 2017


Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday have earned quite a reputation thanks to numerous Hollywood incarnations over the years. Arguably one of the most popular …

Schindler's List

June 19th, 2017


It was one of the darkest hours in the world and amidst the horrors, Oskar Schindler managed to help save many lives from certain death. This week we'll find out how much of it was actually true as we compare history …

Behind the True Story of Bitter Harvest

June 12th, 2017


In a first for Based on a True Story, we'll get an exclusive peek behind the true story of Bitter Harvest from the film's writer, Richard …

The Experiment

June 5th, 2017


Adrien Brody and Forest Whitaker put on a great performance in The Experiment in a story that's based on what most consider the most controversial …

A League of Their Own

May 29th, 2017


May 30th, 1943 was opening day for a new league. Did women really replace the men in baseball during World War II? This week on the podcast we'll learn more about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League as …

Men of Honor

May 22nd, 2017


Carl Brashear was the first to do many things. This week we'll compare history with Cuba Gooding Jr and Robert DeNiro's film Men of Honor.

Get the …

Cadillac Records

May 15th, 2017


In a special listener request, we'll cover Cadillac Records and learn the true story behind the history of blues in Chicago.

Get the transcript and …

The Untouchables

May 8th, 2017


Special guest Cody Wheat from the Shots of History podcast joins me this week as we compare history with The Untouchables.

Get the transcript and …

Citizen Kane

May 1st, 2017


Today, Citizen Kane is considered by many to be one of the greatest films of all time. However, when the movie Citizen Kane was released, the man who's life inspired the film was outraged. He tried his best to keep the …


April 24th, 2017


No one expects Disney's Mulan to be very historically accurate, but let's take a few moments to learn more about the real story behind the movie.

Lawrence of Arabia

April 17th, 2017


Very few classic films from Hollywood have shaped how people in the U.S. see the Middle East more than Lawrence of Arabia...but is the movie …

USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage

April 10th, 2017


It was the single worst sea disaster in the U.S. Navy, and it was covered up by the U.S. government at the end of World War II. Learn the true story …


April 3rd, 2017


Newsies tells the story of the little guys (quite literally, the young newsboys) against "the man". In this case, "the man" being newspaper barons …

The Fellowship of the Ring

April 1st, 2017


You know the story. Frodo and his band of companions start the journey to take the One Ring to Mordor. But is the story we saw on the big screen true …


March 27th, 2017


William Wallace is still considered to be an incredibly important person in Scottish history. But is Mel Gibson's version accurate to the real …

The Men Who Stare at Goats

March 20th, 2017


Who doesn't love a good conspiracy theory? We've got a doozy this week as we compare history with The Men Who Stare at Goats.


Get the full show …

Walt Before Mickey

March 13th, 2017


Are you a Disney fan? Then you'll love this deep dive into the remarkable early life of Walt Disney as we compare history with the movie Walt Before …


March 6th, 2017


There's outdoor sports, then there's extreme outdoors activities. In this week's episode we'll compare history with Hollywood's version of Everest.


February 27th, 2017


Did you watch the Oscars last night? What a crazy turn of events with the whole Best Picture scandal. While most of the media will be covering Warren …

Bitter Harvest

February 20th, 2017


This Friday, Bitter Harvest hits the theaters and tells a story that most people haven't heard. Learn the true story before you go see the film.

Check out the show notes and more at:

Florence Foster Jenkins

February 13th, 2017


Florence Foster Jenkins is up for a couple Academy Awards. Let's find out how accurate the movie is by comparing Hollywood with history.

Full show …

Black Mass

February 6th, 2017


Compare history with Hollywood's version of Black Mass.

Check out the site for full show notes and more:

13 Hours

January 30th, 2017


Compare history with Hollywood's version of 13 Hours.

Check out the site for full show notes and more:

The Big Short

January 23rd, 2017


Compare history with Hollywood's version of The Big Short.

Check out the site for full show notes and more:


January 16th, 2017


You've seen the movie. But how much of Titanic was true, and how much of it was made up for the film? Let's compare history with Hollywood's …

The Pianist

January 9th, 2017


He lived through unthinkable measures. At a time when millions were slaughtered, including his family and friends, Wladyslaw Szpilman managed to …

Hidden Figures

January 2nd, 2017


This week we'll do something a bit different as we look ahead. Instead of learning about a movie that's already been released, we'll look ahead to a movie coming out this next weekend.

Hidden Figures tells the …

A Beautiful Mind

December 26th, 2016


On October 11th, 1994, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced their Nobel prize winners. Three brilliant scientists jointly won the coveted award. They were Professor John C. Harsanyi from the University of …

Joyeux Noël

December 19th, 2016


With the Christmas season upon us, I wanted to cover a film that'd help represent the Christmas spirit.

In 2005, French filmmaker Christian Carion …


December 12th, 2016


Tom McCarthy started his acting career with a short movie in 1989 called Roast Suckling. Although that's probably not something most have seen, he's one of those actors that you'd recognize when you see him. Probably …

The Sound of Music

December 5th, 2016


There are few movies that stand near the top of the all-time list for income. One of those movies is The Sound of Music.

With a budget of about $8 million when it was produced in the 1960s, it was one of the bigger …

Captain Phillips

November 28th, 2016


Between 2004 and 2016, Paul Greengrass directed a total of six movies. Four of those have Matt Damon in them. Three of them are about the fictitious …


November 21st, 2016


With the Thanksgiving season upon us, I thought it'd be a great opportunity to travel back in time to the days of Colonial America. Then I realized …


November 14th, 2016


Nechama Tec was born in Lublin, Poland in 1931. When she was eight years old, her life would forever change as Nazis invaded her hometown. As a …

The Wolf of Wall Street

November 7th, 2016


The latest in the line of collaborations between actor Leonardo DiCaprio and director Martin Scorsese is 2013's The Wolf of Wall Street. It received …

The Conjuring

October 31st, 2016


Happy Halloween! I wanted to do something special this week. I thought it'd be fun to cover the true story behind something scary. But after starting to look for some movies to fit the bill, I quickly realized most of …

Steve Jobs

October 24th, 2016


Few can debate the huge impact Steve Jobs had on the world. So it's no wonder that after Steve Jobs passed away in 2011, there was in influx of news and media surrounding the life of the outspoken Apple co-founder and …

Amazing Grace

October 17th, 2016


Whether or not you're even religious, you've probably heard of the song Amazing Grace. It's one of those Christian hymns that just about everyone has heard, or at least heard of, at some point. It was first published in …

The Finest Hours

October 10th, 2016


In a retelling of one of the greatest moments in U.S. Coast Guard's history, The Finest Hours is a feel-good movie of true heroism. When sitting down …

The Black Dahlia

October 3rd, 2016


Elizabeth Short's murder was considered to be the crime of the century. And it's a mystery that many are still fascinated by, decades later. So when Brian De Palma directed a 2006 movie of the same name, many moviegoers …

Deepwater Horizon

September 26th, 2016


The movie Deepwater Horizon comes out on this Friday. So again we're going to take some time to look ahead at a movie. Before you go see the movie in theaters, let's take a few minutes to learn what happened before, …

The Great Escape

September 19th, 2016


Despite having an all-star cast and being based on a true story, most of the characters in the film didn't actually exist. Instead, Hollywood opted …


September 12th, 2016


Even though Argo starts off with text that says it's based on a true story, the movie was actually based primarily on two sources: a book by Tony Mendez, the CIA agent Ben Affleck plays, and a 2007 article on Wired by …

Pawn Sacrifice

September 5th, 2016


Pawn Sacrifice tells the story of one of the greatest chess players of all time—Bobby Fischer. How do you make the game of chess into an interesting story? With Bobby Fischer's life, you don't need to stretch it too far.

Apollo 13

August 29th, 2016


Ron Howard and Tom Hanks teamed up for their second of now four movies the duo have worked on together in 1995 with Apollo 13.

Links from this …

The Danish Girl

August 22nd, 2016


Lili Isle Elvenes, better known as Lili Elbe, was one of the first known recipients of a gender reassignment surgery. In 2015, her life was brought to the forefront of many people's minds when Alicia Vikander won an …

The Social Network

August 15th, 2016


The Social Network tells the story behind one of the world's most popular websites, Facebook. It's got everything that makes for a great …


August 8th, 2016


Anthropoid hits theaters on Friday. It's the story of how the Czechoslovakian government, forced into exile after the Germans occupied their homeland in 1938, tried to fight back and take down Reinhard Heydrich at the …


August 1st, 2016


Will Smith would say Ali was the film he was most proud of as an actor. And it tells a very important story of a true legend: Muhammad Ali.

Although …

Pain & Gain

July 25th, 2016


Pain & Gain is the first comedy we've covered here on the show. It was also the first comedy for Michael Bay since another Miami-based story, Bad Boys II in 2003. Another first for Pain & Gain is that, unlike …


July 18th, 2016


In 2007, director David Fincher helmed the movie simply entitled, Zodiac, which tells the thrilling story of a rash of killings in the 1960s and 70s.

Despite the film's failure at the box office, the subject is one that …

Catch Me If You Can

July 11th, 2016


In 2002, Steven Spielberg started filming the life of Frank Abagnale. Fortunately it only took about four months of filming for Spielberg to get the shots he needed. On Christmas Day of 2002, Spielberg's DreamWorks …

The Hunt for Red October

June 27th, 2016


Tom Clancy is known for his captivating military stories with stunningly accurate technical details. Clancy's career started with a fascinating novel: The Hunt for Red October.

The Hunt for Red October is based on the …

Free State of Jones

June 13th, 2016


Next Friday, on June 24th, director Gary Ross, the three-time Academy Award nominated writer and director behind Seabiscuit, The Hunger Games and Pleasantville, has taken his place behind the camera once again in a …


May 30th, 2016


This year, Zack Snyder directed the epic Batman v Superman superhero movie, but it wasn't his first foray into comics. In fact, that came in 2006 …


May 16th, 2016


Eight years ago, in 2008, Ron Howard directed the Oscar-nominated retelling of what are still the most popular political interviews to ever air on …

The Imitation Game

May 2nd, 2016


Benedict Cumberbatch and Kiera Knightley starred in 2014's The Imitation Game. Set in the midst of World War II, The Imitation Game tells the story of British mathematician Alan Turing and his quest to conquer the …


April 18th, 2016


On April 15th, Major League Baseball celebrates Jackie Robinson Day, in honor of the man who broke down racial barriers by becoming the first black player in the MLB. A few years ago, a movie named after Jackie's jersey …

The Revenant

April 2nd, 2016


When a movie says it's based on a true story, how much of that is actually real? In our first episode we'll look at the true story behind 2015's blockbuster hit The Revenant.

Music credits and more show notes can be …

Loading ...

Listen to Based on a True Story


A free podcast app for iPhone and Android

  • User-created playlists and collections
  • Download episodes while on WiFi to listen without using mobile data
  • Stream podcast episodes without waiting for a download
  • Queue episodes to create a personal continuous playlist
RadioPublic on iOS and Android
Or by RSS
RSS feed

Connect with listeners

Podcasters use the RadioPublic listener relationship platform to build lasting connections with fans

Yes, let's begin connecting
Browser window

Find new listeners

  • A dedicated website for your podcast
  • Web embed players designed to convert visitors to listeners in the RadioPublic apps for iPhone and Android
Clicking mouse cursor

Understand your audience

  • Capture listener activity with affinity scores
  • Measure your promotional campaigns and integrate with Google and Facebook analytics
Graph of increasing value

Engage your fanbase

  • Deliver timely Calls To Action, including email acquistion for your mailing list
  • Share exactly the right moment in an episode via text, email, and social media
Icon of cellphone with money

Make money

  • Tip and transfer funds directly to podcastsers
  • Earn money for qualified plays in the RadioPublic apps with Paid Listens