Don't go in the water
As seafaring disaster films go, there is “Titanic” and then there is everything else.
Indeed, director James Cameron’s big-budget epic about a romance between a society girl (Kate Winslet) and a penniless artist (Leonardo DiCaprio) aboard the liner during its ill-fated 1912 maiden voyage set or tied a number of moviemaking records, including budget ($200 million; since surpassed), Oscar nominations and wins (14 and 11) and box office gross ($2.195 billion, since surpassed).
Shipwrecks had always fascinated Cameron and so for the film, he was painstaking in his recreations. The underwater shots at the actual wreck were filmed by his team in the North Atlantic, and for the sinking scenes, he had a replica of the ship constructed in a tank on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula. Little things like furniture, decor and dishes were also taken from historical photos.
Such attention to detail – along with the performances, story and just about everything else – lift this 1997 film head and shoulders above the run-of-the-mill disaster-at-sea flick. Viewers can relive the grandeur of the liner and the horror of its demise Tuesday, March 30, on Starz.