Not necessarily a true story, but it seemed to be based on a real person. The story was very controversial when it was made, since it very closely mimics the life of William Randolph Hearst, the millionaire newspaper tycoon.
Hearst was incredibly powerful in Hollywood at this time; this film was not taken well. Hearst himself attempted to have the film destroyed but failed to do so.
The film is considered the best ever because of its grand scale, intricate storyline and the way it revolutionized films and film making. Orson Wells was also probably the best at the time and possibly ever with the camera, the composition of the shots and quality of the shots were far and away better then anything at the time.
Its not one of my favorite films either, actually I think it's kind of dull, but it was one of the most important films ever made.