7 shows and movies you almost won’t believe are based on real life

Hugh Grant in 'A Very English Scandal.' (Photo supplied: Showmax)
Hugh Grant in 'A Very English Scandal.' (Photo supplied: Showmax)

Cape Town - The stories of real-life deadly disasters, doomed romances, salacious scandals, audacious criminals and extraordinary bravery are told in these series and movies on internet TV.

1. HBO’s Chernobyl (DStv Now

The human story of the greatest “unnatural” disaster in history is brought to life by brilliant performances from Stellan Skarsgård, Emily Watson and Jared Harris in a gripping series that follows the responders who made incredible sacrifices to contain the nuclear fallout in 1981.

2. Escape at Dannemora (Showmax

Directed by Ben Stiller and starring Benicio del Toro and Patricia Arquette, the limited series tells the true story of two inmates who become romantically involved with a prison employee before escaping from a US prison.

3. Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool (DStv Now

Eccentric, ageing Hollywood icon Gloria Grahame meets the much younger Peter Turner in 1978, and before long they are embarking on a beautiful romance. But their relationship seems doomed almost from the start. This is the real-life story of Grahame and Turner's romance as told in Turner's memoir.

4. The Tale (DStv Now

When Jennifer was 13, she wrote a story - The Tale - about her relationship with two adults, her running coach and her horse-riding teacher. Now a successful journalist, Jennifer returns to the Carolina horse farm of her childhood to investigate what really happened to her there.

5. A Very English Scandal (Showmax

Hugh Grant portrays the real-life Jeremy Thorpe, who had tongues wagging in the 1960s. He was a Liberal Member of Parliament engaged in a secret affair with a man at a time when homosexuality was illegal. (If you like A Very English Scandal, keep an eye out for the British period drama Gentleman Jack, coming to Showmax and DStv Now from 28 May!)

6. Special (Netflix

Another delightfully odd, painfully real comedy series from Netflix. Ryan is a gay man with cerebral palsy who decides to push that reset button and get out there. Based on Ryan O’Connell’s memoir: I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves.

7. Catch Me If You Can (Amazon Prime

Frank Abagnale Jr was a phenomenal con artist who successfully faked it as a pilot, a doctor and a lawyer, and made millions along the way. An FBI agent goes after the notorious criminal, whose talents would eventually land him a job helping the FBI catch other fraudsters. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks, and directed by Steven Spielberg.