Thackeray taunts Dickens by reminding him of the American phrase, "There's gold in them thar hills. "
The film events take place prior to Christmas 1843. The phrase is attributed to Georgia assayer Mathew Stephenson regarding the 1849 California gold rush but popularized in an 1892 book by Mark Twain.
In the movie, Tara, the Dickens' children's nanny is seen by Charles Dickens to be carrying a copy of 'Varney the Vampire', which was a popular 'Penny Dreadful' weekly cheap publication popular in the Victorian era. This was suggested as a part of the inspiration behind A Christmas Carol possibly because of the spectral associations and the idea for the visits of the ghosts of Marley and Christmas past and present and yet to come. A Christmas Carol was written and published in 1843, but Varney the Vampire was not actually first published until 1845.
Despite their portrayal, Dickens and Thackeray were on very friendly terms in 1843. Their feud only started towards the end of the 1850's when Dickens became jealous of Thackeray being compared to him. Thackeray responded by publicly criticising Dickens' decision to abandon his wife. In addition, Thackeray boasts about the money his latest book has earned. In reality, Thackeray was a struggling hack writer in 1843. He didn't achieve a major success until the publication of Vanity Fair in 1847. Dickens and Thackeray were reconciled shortly before the latter's death in 1863.
Towards the end of the film, Dickens views the family Christmas tree and remarks that since Prince Albert, the German-born husband (and cousin) of Queen Victoria had instituted the custom in England in 1840, they were bound to become popular. In fact, the first Christmas tree in England was erected at the behest of Queen Charlotte, the equally German-born wife of George III in 1800. Christmas trees had been fashionable in England since Dickens' childhood.
Much is made of turkey being the centre-piece of a good Christmas feast. This tradition arose much later, however. In Dickens' day - and in the original novella - the festive bird of choice was a goose.
Near the end of the film when Dickens is having a flashback to working as a child in the factory, the boss man asks if his father was "dining with the Queen." When Dickens was a boy, there would have been a king instead of a queen reigning.
At one point Charles tells his wife Catherine that he should have been a journalist. Except that the real Charles Dickens started his writing career as a reporter and spent his life working with various publications. His initial work was reporting on events including court proceedings and Parliament, and is how he began working on revealing social injustices.