17 February 2013 4:48 AM, PST | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Oops! For months, screenwriter Tony Kushner has been considered a shoo-in for an Oscar.  But the award-winning playwright with impeccable credentials --  “Angels in America, his 1993 play about AIDS,  won the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony award as well as half a dozen awards from drama critics -- tripped, if not tumbled, last week. To make the fight in Congress to pass the 13th amendment and end slavery in America more dramatic in “Lincoln,” Kushner changed the votes of two Connecticut congressmen from Yea to Nay.  A current Connecticut congressman who could not believe that his state, which fought on the Union side in the Civil War, had voted to uphold slavery asked the Congressional Research Service to investigate.  The answer: Kushner had rewritten history.  And, with Academy members still voting, Kushner’s Oscar is no longer a sure thing. Audiences understand that historical movies usually take historical »


- Aljean Harmetz

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