The real Steve Schmidt, who is played in this movie by Woody Harrelson, called the film's portrayal of him, and the events surrounding Sarah Palin's GOP nomination as the party's Vice Presidential candidate and candidacy as accurate.
In the beginning of the film, a reporter asks "Can a soufflé rise twice?". This was a famous quote by the Australian Labor Prime Minister, Paul Keating about the opposition Australian Liberal Party politician Andrew Peacock who was making a second attempt to gain the leadership of his party in the 1980s.
Nicolle Wallace, the real life aide to Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin, said the film was "highly credible", "true enough to make me squirm", and "captured the spirit and emotion of the campaign".
The main story-line of this film revolves around the recruiting of the Vice Presidential running mate Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin (Julianne Moore) to the 2008 US American GOP / Republican Party Presidential Race of Senator John McCain (Ed Harris). This film's director, Jay Roach, had previously directed a movie called Mystery, Alaska (1999), Alaska being the American state where Palin was governor.
The film was made and first released and broadcast about four years after the 2008 US Presidential campaign which featured the GOP / Republican candidates of John McCain for President, and Sarah Palin for Vice President, and who are played in this film by Ed Harris and Julianne Moore respectively.
Actor Woody Harrelson has appeared in such American politics movies / politically themed pictures as LBJ (2016), where he plays the title nick-name character of former Democrat American President Lyndon Johnson, Game Change (2012), Barry Levinson's political satire Wag the Dog (1997), Battle in Seattle (2007), and Welcome to Sarajevo (1997). The following year after LBJ (2016), Harrelson played the title character in _Wilson (2017), but this was not former Democrat American President 'Woodrow Wilson', as with the earlier _Wilson (1944_.
Star Ed Harris, who plays real life 2008 American Presidential Candidate Senator John McCain in this film, previously portrayed another American Senator character, the fictional Senator Hugh Hathaway in the political comedy Running Mates (1992), where Harris' character is also running for American President.
This film's director Jay Roach, who directed this movie about the 2008 US American Presidential election, previously directed Recount (2008), which was about the 2000 US American Presidential Election. Roach later directed the political comedy The Campaign (2012) and the political drama All the Way (2016), the latter about former American US President Lyndon B. Johnson.
The name of the film's source 2010 book by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann in the UK has a different title than it has in the USA. The work there is instead known as "Race of a Lifetime: How Obama Won the White House".
HBO Films optioned the film's source book "Game Change" (2010) by Mark Halperin and by John Heilemann in the month of January of the year of 2010. The work was only first published on 11th January of this year.