FASCINATING FACTS: 25 Interesting Facts About The Making Of The Movie “Titanic”

FASCINATING FACTS: 25 Interesting Facts About The Making Of The Movie “Titanic”


The movie Titanic has become the epitome of  enduring love that sustains even after death. The simple story set amidst the epic disaster has captivated the audience hearts. But there were several interesting nuggets that happened backstage, incidents that lend more sparkle to the love story. Here we bring you 25 facts about the Titanic that will make you go awww.

1. Madonna auditioned for the role of Rose but was considered too old to play the role of younger Rose.

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Madonna and Rose ? Thank God, Cameron turned out to be sensible.(source)

2. Christian Bale openly campaigned for the role of Jack Dawson but James Cameron refused as he did not want two British actors playing the role of two Americans.

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3. The elderly Couple who lie on the bed awaiting death as water floods the room is based on the real-life couple Ida and Isidor Strauss, the owners of Macy’s who died on the RMS Titanic.

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Ida was offered a seat on a lifeboat but refused so that she could stay with her husband, saying, “As we have lived together, so we shall die together.” There was a scene filmed that depicted this moment but was cut from the final version.(source)

4. In the movie, Jack says he goes ice fishing in Wissota lake but the lake did not exist in 1912. This man-made lake was created in 1917!

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In the movie, Jack claims to have gone ice fishing on Lake Wissota, situated near Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. But the man-made reservoir was created in 1917.(source)

5. During a shooting schedule in Canada, an angry crew member added disassociative drug PCP (angel dust) into the soup that Cameron and others were eating. The drug sent more than 50 people to the hospital. Cameron managed to vomit before the drug could take full hold. The perpetrator has never been caught.

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A disgruntled crew member added Angel dust in the soup. Almost 50 members including Jim Cameron, Kate Winslet, and Leonardo DiCaprio were taken ill. Once Cameron realized the severity of the condition, he tried to induce vomiting to get rid off of the drug-laced soup. Some of the crew members who were hospitalized were released after 24 hours of observation. The culprit was never found.(source)

6. Kate Winslet flashed Leonardo DiCaprio on the first day (of their meeting) so that there would be no awkwardness between them during the filming of the nude scene.

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The nude scene was the first meeting between the two actors. So, to break the ice, Kate simply decided to flash her nude body to Leonardo DiCaprio which made them laugh. Thus, there was no incipient awkwardness or tension when Jack was painting Rose in the buff.(source)

7. The scenes set in 1912 lasts for two hours and thirty minutes, the exact time it took for RMS Titanic to sink.

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The scenes set in 1912, i.e. the whole movie except the present-day scenes and the opening and ending credits, have a total length of two hours and forty minutes, the exact time it took for Titanic to sink. Also, the collision with the iceberg reportedly lasted 37 seconds, which is how long the collision scene is in the movie.(source)

8. Everyone (trade circles) including James Cameron thought that Titanic made on a budget of 200 million USD would end up as a catastrophic disaster instead, it went on to get an initial worldwide gross of 1.8 billion USD 

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Before the film release various film critics and insiders thought that Titanic would prove to be a “big disappointment” at the box office, Cameron shared this pessimism . But to their surprise Titanic went on to become a blockbuster initially grossing more than 1.8 billion USD worldwide. In fact, it was the first movie to touch the billion dollar mark.(source)

9. James Cameron, who was deeply fascinated with shipwrecks considered the RMS Titanic as “Mount Everest of Shipwrecks” wrote a script for Titanic and sought Hollywood funding to get to dive to the shipwreck; not because he particularly wanted to make the movie.

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Jack Cameron had a strong fascination for shipwrecks and considered RMS Titanic as the “Mount Everest of Shipwrecks.” Once he saw an IMAX movie made from the footage of the wreck itself, his fascination getting stronger, he thought of getting Hollywood to fund his passion for his underwater diving (to seek and film RMS Titanic) and the only way was to make a film on the Titanic. Thus, the movie Titanic was born!(source)

10. The character in Titanic who fortifies himself with alcohol and rides down the ship into the ocean along with Rose and Jack is based on the real-life person Chief Baker Charles Joughin. He survived the ordeal and credited the booze for that.

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The real Charles Joughin may very well have been the last survivor to leave the Titanic. Joughin rode down the Titanic and landed in the ocean. He kept himself afloat by paddling in the water for almost two hours. Joughin who had consumed copious amount of alcohol said that he did not feel the cold while in the water (probably the whiskey kept him warm). Joughin was rescued by RMS Carpathia in the morning with only swollen feet as a reminder of his two-hour paddling.(source)

11. There was a real J.Dawson on RMS Titanic. “J.Dawson or Joseph Dawson” was a trimmer aboard the RMS Titanic. He was buried in the Fairview Lawn cemetery in Nova Scotia. Today, his gravestone is the most widely visited one in the cemetery.

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When James Cameron was writing the script, he intended to create a fictionalized Rose and Jack Dawson. It was after he finished his script, he found out that there was a real “J. Dawson” who died aboard the Titanic. The trimmer Dawson was buried at Fairview Lawn Cemetery in Nova Scotia. Post-release of the movie, his gravestone is the most visited in the cemetery.(source)

12. James Cameron chose to build only the starboard side of his RMS Titanic. All shots were reversed to show the ship docked on the port side at Southampton. The crew managed the illusion by reversing the signs and the costumes.

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James Cameron opted to construct the starboard side of the ship as weather reports (for 1912) indicated north- to- south wind which blew the funnel smoke aft. This proved a problem for the crew who needed to show the departure of the ship from Southampton ( the ship was docked on the port side). The production crew managed to overcome this obstacle by writing/doing everything in reverse, if someone walked on the right side in the script, they were made to walk on the left during the filming. In post-production, the film was flipped to the correct direction.(source)

13. It is actually James Cameron hand that is seen sketching the nude picture of Rose. He also drew other pictures in jack’s portfolio.

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The picture of nude Rose was drawn by James Cameron. It is his hand you see in the movie. Cameron also drew all the pictures Jack’s portfolio that Rose was looking at on the ship’s deck.(source)

14. The studios wanted Matthew McConaughey to play Jack Dawson but James Cameron insisted on Leonardo DiCaprio.

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The production studio wanted Mathew McConaughey to play Jack Dawson but Cameron insisted on Leonardo DiCaprio for the role.(source)

15. Neil deGrasse Tyson, an astrophysicist informed James Cameron that the night sky was wrongly set for April 15, 1912 (when Titanic Sinks). The error was corrected in the 3D release of the movie.

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Neil deGrasse Tyson was hounding Cameron for more than a decade to have a historically accurate night sky – in the scenes after the Titanic sank. He got his wish fulfilled when James Cameron released a corrected sky in the 3D version of the movie.(source)

16. Celine Dion’s “My heart will go on” from Titanic is one of the iconic movie songs. However, Kate Winslet admitted that she hated the song partly due to the fact that people tended to play the song when she was around.

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Kate admits that she hates the “love theme song”, She really has some harsh words to say about the song, “I feel like throwing up when I hear it… I wish I could say, “Oh listen, everybody! It’s the Celine Dion song!” But I don’t. I just have to sit there, you know, kind of straight-faced with a massive internal eye roll.”(source)

17. Gloria Stuart, the 1930s actor who played the elder Rose died at the age of 100 just like her character in the movie.

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It’s an amazing coincidence.(source)

18. It has been scientifically proved that the drift-board on which Rose floats could have withstood the weight of Rose and Jack. It would also have kept them afloat for more than an hour (time taken to rescue Rose in the movie). All they had to do was tie the life jacket around the driftwood for buoyancy.

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Towards the end of the movie, Rose is floating on a wooden board in the freezing Atlantic while her lover Jack Dawson is in the water eventually freezing to death. The die hard fans of Leo felt that both could be saved. The discovery channel show scientifically tested the fan’s theory and proved that fans indeed were correct in their supposition.(source)

19. When Jack is handcuffed to a pole in E deck, he irreverently quips, “I’ll wait here.” – That was not part of the script but Cameron liked it very much so he kept it in.

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Leonardo DiCaprio kept the verve of Jack Dawson alive by this impromptu line. The line was not scripted but Cameron felt that the line was too funny to be ignored, so it stayed.(source)

20. The underwater shots in the Titanic were from the actual wreckage of RMS Titanic. Cameron hired the Russian research vehicle Akademik Mstislav Keldysh and its two submersibles MIR 1 & MIR 2 to shoot underwater closeups at a depth of 12,500 feet below the North Atlantic.

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The perfectionist in Cameron wanted real wreckage to be shown in his movie. He hired the Russian research vehicle and its 2 submersibles. He made 12 dives at the depths of 12,500 feet below the North Atlantic.(source)

21. Titanic with Leonardo DiCaprio was so popular that 7% of American teen girls had seen it twice within five weeks. The phenomenon of girls repeatedly watching the film was nicknamed “Leo-Mania”.

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That angelic face does not require an explanation, does it?(source)

22. This is the first movie that saw two different actors getting nominated for Academy awards, for playing the same role. Kate Winslet and Gloria Stuart were nominated (Best actress and Best Supporting actress respectively) for the role of Rose.

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Titanic was the first movie to receive two Academy Award nominations for the same character (Rose played by Kate Winslet & Gloria Stuart).(source)

23. Most of the Ocean that the Extras were jumping into was a big 3 feet deep pool!

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24. James Cameron in his pitch to the 20th Century Fox described it as Romeo and Juliet on Titanic and the 20th Century Fox promptly came on board to fund the movie.

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James Cameron did not go into a detailed pitch, he just said that Titanic is the story of Romeo and Juliet aboard a doomed ship, 20th-century fox did not want to lose Cameron so they agreed to fund the movie. (source)

25. In the original script, Cal was supposed to find Rose in the Carpathia. Rose was supposed to tell him to let her mother know that she perished in the sinking of the ship and that he would leave her alone for the rest of her life.

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James Cameron had envisioned a different ending to the movie but the paucity of time and budget forced him to alter the script.(source)

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