The Best True-Story Movies of 2024 (So Far)

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It’s an old adage for a reason: Truth is stranger than fiction, One of this year’s juiciest movie releases, Scoop, was based on a true story—retelling Prince Andrew’s jaw-dropping interview with BBC. Then came Unfrosted, which tracked the creation of Pop-Tarts (what’s your favorite flavor, and why isn’t it Frosted Brown Sugar Cinnamon?) After the Pop-Tart bonanza came Back to Black, the much-anticipated Amy Winehouse biopic.

Come to think of it, 2024 has delivered a ton of movies based on historic events. Are we all that damn nostalgic, or is Hollywood just running out of IP? Either way, we’ve rounded up the year’s best films based on true stories (so far). You’ll spot appearances from Rufus Sewell, Hugh Grant, Melissa McCarthy, and a dog who’s vying for a spot on our 2025 Animal Oscars list. Enjoy, folks.

Bob Marley: One Love

You might know Bob Marley’s story, but you’ve never seen it like this. Bob Marley: One Love stars Kingsley Ben-Adir as the reggae pioneer. One Love weaves through Marley’s remarkable career—from his humble beginnings to global superstardom.

Watch on MGM+

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Shirley

Shirley tells the true story of Shirley Chisholm, the first Black woman to run for president. Regina King stars as Chisholm and masterfully depicts her history-making campaign. This is a story of endurance, triumph, and immense courage.

Watch on Netflix

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Arthur the King

Remember Air Bud? He’s got nothing on Arthur—a scrappy pup who finds a new owner amid astonishing circumstances. When Michael Light, an adventure racer, finds Arthur along the competition trail, he can’t bear to leave him behind. And Arthur doesn’t want to leave Michael, either. Instead, they stick together and embark on a 435-mile race through the Dominican Republic.

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The Beautiful Game

The Beautiful Game is inspired by the true story of the Homeless World Cup Soccer Tournament. The film stars Bill Nighy (not to be confused with the science guy!) as Mal, the manager of England’s football team for the unhoused. When the players make it to the championship game in Rome, Mal recruits Vinny, a skilled striker and their new secret weapon.

Watch on Netflix

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Hit Man

Even though it eventually swerves from its source material—Skip Hollandsworth’s brilliant Texas Monthly storyHit Man is based on the life of Gary Johnson. He worked with the Houston police department to seek out potential murderers—by posing as a professional hit man. Once you finish watching the Richard Linklater–directed film, do yourself a favor and read Hollandsworth’s profile of Johnson.

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Scoop

In Scoop, Rufus Sewell is entirely unrecognizable as Prince Andrew. The film spotlights the Duke of York’s landmark interview with BBC Newsnight, which interrogated him on his ties to Jeffery Epstein and shocking sexual-abuse allegations. The real interview took place in 2019—and Netflix’s re-creation is eerily similar.

Watch on Netflix

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Back to Black

Back to Black chronicle Amy Winehouse’s historic career. The film specifically hones in on her marriage to Blake Fielder-Civil. For those who don’t know, their relationship inspired her record Back to Black, which sold more than 16 million copies worldwide and led to the singer’s tragic downfall.

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