The words "based on a true story" might be the biggest five-word lie in the history of film. Over the years, countless movies have taken true stories and fictionalized them beyond recognition. The truth is... the truth isn’t usually all that exciting. However, every once in awhile, a story comes along that is both incredible and true.
If you can believe it, there are even stories, or at least elements of stories, that are so fascinating and true that filmmakers and TV show creators are forced to leave them out of their retellings because they are too unbelievable. Maybe the public won't be able to register the events properly, leading them to doubt the validity of the film as a whole, or maybe film-goers will simply write it off as creative license on the part of the director. Whatever the reasons, these details are said to be true but they were left out because they would be distracting at some level.
Now, compare that to all the extra stuff that directors add into a true story. Most true tales around us are so inflated with fiction that we, as film fans, are basically programmed to watch skeptically when we take in true stories. Perhaps what makes it so hilarious is that, sometimes, it goes the other way. Sometimes directors think, "nah, nobody's going to believe that happened. Let's just leave it out to make it more believable." Well let's count them down, the details so unbelievable that even Hollywood didn't think we would believe them. Here are 15 true details that were taken out of films for being too unbelievable.
15 No Maggots In The Revenant
14 Statue Head In Cloverfield
13 Whale Calls in Big Miracle
12 Intelligence In Lone Survivor
11 Machismo in Valkyrie
10 More Dog Deaths In Eight Below
9 Skipped Whippings In 12 Years a Slave
8 Easy Execution In Braveheart
7 Missing Domestic Abuse In Straight Outta Compton
6 A Higher Jump In The Wire
5 Homosexuality In A Beautiful Mind
4 More Dumb Guards In Public Enemies
3 Untimely Death Of Pocahontas
2 The Athletic Side In The Imitation Game
1 Sponsorships In Gladiator
In today's entertainment industry, sports players have sponsors and give plugs whenever they can. Remember when Peyton Manning said he was "going to drink a lot of Budweiser"? Yeah, you get it. Well this is the kind of sellouts we have today. It would be weird to have seen that sort of thing in a period film like Gladiator though, right? Well originally, Russell Crowe's character was going to be sponsored by a specific brand of olive oil, but the filmmakers scrapped it in fear of making it look like a satire. The craziest part about this is that it's actually the way it was back then. Roman Gladiators were sponsored by products. They were vehicles for advertising. They even had their own merchandise. Yet, since people would never have believed it, so this detail was canned.
Sources: History, Biography, Slate
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