• Top 10 biopics
• Alex von Tunzelmann's Reel History series
It's Oscars time again, and this year many of the big contenders have one thing in common. Two thirds of the contenders for best film are based on historical events. History also picks up four out of five best actor nominations, two out of five best actresses, and three out of five directors. So fierce has the competition among historical films become that it was reported that academic "history assassins" were paid handsomely by marketing consultants to spot errors in other studios' films. These errors would then be filtered out subtly through blogs, undermining rivals' Oscar hopes.
It was rumoured that sniping about the liberties