17 Surprising Movies That Were Actually Based on True Stories

17 Surprising Movies That Were Actually Based on True Stories

17 Surprising Movies That Were Actually Based on True Stories

BuzzFeed has put together a list of movies that were actually based on true stories. Here are five examples that prove that truth is indeed sometimes stranger than fiction (check out the full list HERE):

50 First Dates. The movie may be a light-hearted rom com, but it’s actually based on the real-life story of Michelle Philpots. After incurring two serious head injuries, she now has an extremely rare form of amnesia which prevents her from forming or retaining any short-term memories. This means she has no recollection of any events post-1994, and since her memory resets when she’s asleep, her husband must remind her of the accident and their marriage by showing her wedding photos each morning.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. While most of the movie is entirely fictional, some of the plot and the character Leatherface were based on the real-life serial killer Ed Gein. In fact, the house in the movie and its gruesome contents were based on what was discovered in Gein’s home in 1957, when police encountered hundreds of trophies and keepsakes made from the skin and bones of both Gein’s victims and other bodies he’d exhumed from local graveyards.

Marley and Me. When journalist John Grogan’s rambunctious dog died after 13 years with his growing family, he wrote a column dedicated to Marley’s memory in the Philadelphia Inquirer. It generated over 800 responses from readers expressing sympathy and sharing their own experiences of owning pets. As a result, Grogan was prompted to write a memoir about his family’s life with Marley which swiftly became a best-seller and was then adapted into a movie.

The Terminal. What’s ostensibly a cute rom-com is actually based on the completely wild true-life story of Iranian refugee, Merhan Karimi Nasseri. He arrived at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris in 1988 with the intention of travelling to the UK, but was turned away by immigration officials because he didn’t have a passport. However, since he couldn’t be returned to his origin country either, Nasseri spent the next 16 years living in an airport lounge.

The Pursuit of Happyness. The movie starring Will Smith and his son Jaden was actually based on the real-life story of Chris Gardner and his two-year-old son who were homeless for a year in San Fransisco. While Gardner was enrolled in a trainee scheme at a stock brokerage, he didn’t have enough money for the deposit to rent an apartment so he and his son would sleep anywhere they could find. Despite the adversity, however, Gardner thrived at work and was eventually offered a full-time job and his career soon went stratospheric—nowadays he’s worth $48 million.


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