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Movies That Lied to Be Real: The Truth Behind the Stories

Based on real facts
Based on real facts

I posted yesterday Sunday, on LinkedIn, a commercial for a car shop, in which I simulated the scene from the GTA game, praising the creative ability of Brazilians to advertise or even work with marketing. Too bad that sometimes this marketing is for "evil": fooling people with easy courses and promises to earn money. I even wrote about it, look for it on My Blog:

Continuing on this subject, I ended up remembering a video from a YouTube channel YouTube, called Refúgio Cult, where six films are listed that are "sold/advertised" as if they were real.

Sorry about the video cover being the iconic character, Leatherface from the movie "O Massacre from the Chainsaw(I apologize as there are people who are sensitive about horror movies).

Watching this video, and relating to what I posted yesterday:

I cover in this article, the moments when marketing worked well with movies and made a fool of people. Let's face it, someone here has already taken that line at the beginning or end of the movie seriously: "Based on true events".

At the end of this article, I still give a tip in the "Frequently Asked Questions", on how not to fall for this prank or even if you were in doubt, how to act.

The cinema

The film industry has the power to transport us to different realities and make us believe in the stories that are told on the big screen. However, not always everything is what it seems. Some films use deceptive marketing strategies, claiming to be based on real events, when in fact they are pure fiction. In this article, we will explore the intriguing world of movies that lied to be real, revealing striking examples of this practice and analyzing the implications it has for the entertainment industry.

1. The Fascination of "Based on True Events"

1.1. The Emotional Appeal

The claim that a film is based on true events creates an emotional bond with the audience. This strategy is of particular interest, as people tend to feel more connected with stories that claim to be authentic. They believe they are witnessing events that actually happened, which increases immersion and emotional engagement with the characters and their journeys.

1.2. The Search for Truth

We live in a society that values truth and authenticity. Films that present themselves as based on real events capitalize on this search for veracity, attracting viewers who want to be informed or moved by real stories. These people believe they are receiving true and reliable information, which influences their perception of the portrayed events.

2. Examples of Movies That Lied to Be Real

2.1. "Paranormal Activity

Released in 2007, "Paranormal Activity" made a huge impact by presenting itself as a documentary based on real events. The film depicts the lives of a couple haunted by supernatural events in their home and was promoted as an authentic story, using found footage as evidence. However, it was later revealed that everything was just a fictional production, with actors and special effects.

2.2. "The Blair Witch Project

Blair Witch Project", released in 1999, was a milestone in the use of the "found footage" technique in cinema. The film follows the journey of three missing students in a forest haunted by a witch. Its marketing campaign created the illusion that everything was real, with fake websites and documentaries reinforcing this narrative. However, "The Blair Witch Project" was a work of fiction, not an authentic record.

In this case, as far as we know, it was one of the first films to use the internet., back in 1999, to "bomb" the story, even creating a website.

2.3. "Titanic

Although #Titanic is known as a film based on true events, it is important to note that the film's core story is fictional. The sinking of the ship is a historical event, but the central characters, Jack and Rose, are figments of the writers' imaginations. The inclusion of these fictional characters made it possible to tell a more romantic and emotional story, but it also created a false perception that everything that happened in the film was faithful to real events.

3. Implications and Reflections

3.1. Public Trust

The use of deceptive marketing in films that claim to be based on true events can undermine public confidence. When people find out they've been lied to, it's natural for them to feel betrayed and disappointed in the entertainment industry. This sense of disappointment can lead to greater skepticism towards future films that claim to be real, undermining public reception and interest.

3.2. The Importance of Transparency

To maintain public trust, it is essential that film producers and studios are transparent about the veracity of their films. If a film is a work of fiction, this information must be clearly communicated from the beginning, avoiding mistakes and disappointments. By being transparent, producers can avoid damage to their reputation and build trust with the public.

The example of movies that lied to be real can serve as an important reflection for professionals who work with business marketing. It is essential to consider ethics and transparency in all marketing strategies used, especially when dealing with the veracity of information transmitted to consumers.

When creating marketing campaigns, it is essential to avoid deceptive practices that could undermine public trust. Instead, marketers should focus on building trust with consumers by providing accurate and transparent information about the company's products and services.

In addition, the example of movies that lied to be real highlights the importance of honestly and authentically differentiating yourself in the marketplace. Instead of resorting to deceptive strategies, marketers can look for creative ways to highlight the company's strengths and create value for customers. This can be achieved through the development of relevant content, identification of the target audience and efficient segmentation, as well as the use of appropriate platforms and technologies to reach the desired audience.

In summary, the example of movies that lied to be real serves as an important reminder that honesty and transparency are core values in business marketing. Professionals in this field should seek to build a solid reputation, earn consumers' trust and offer quality products and services, all while adopting ethical and authentic marketing practices.


The marketing of fake movies is a controversial strategy used to attract public attention and increase interest in movies. While this approach may generate an initial positive response, it can also undermine public confidence when the truth comes out. Transparency is key to maintaining a healthy relationship between the entertainment industry and viewers, ensuring that audiences can distinguish between works of fiction and stories based on true events.

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