19 December 1997 : Titanic premieres in theaters and celebrates its 25 years today.
The timeless tale chronicling the romance between Kate Winslet’s Rose, a door-hogging high-society lady with a penchant for heartlessly chucking priceless inheritance to the bottom of the sea instead of passing it on to her granddaughter and Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jack, a human popsicle who should be reemerging from the depths any time soon considering our laissez-faire attitude towards global warming, celebrates its 25 years today.
Indeed, James Cameron’s blockbuster epic originally sailed into domestic movie theaters in December 1997, and rolled out over several months internationally. It became a box office phenomenon and went on to win 11 Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Editing, Best Original Song and more.
To celebrate this milestone (and the fact that an entire generation had Leo posters on their walls and habitually ache to lounge on couches in front of their partners and utter the immortal lines “Draw me like one of your French girls”), here are three facts most hardcore Titanic fans will know but more casual viewers might not:
- It cost more to make the film than the ship. They spent $200 million to make the film in 1997, while the ship cost $7.5 million. As TIME pointed out in 2016, that number would be $180 million after adjusted inflation.
- During the production of the film, it was called Planet Ice.
- Gloria Stuart, who played older Rose in the film’s bookends, was the only Titanic cast member who was alive during Titanic’s maiden voyage in 1912. Stuart was almost 2 when the RMS Titanic perished in the Atlantic. In 1998, she also became the oldest Academy Award nominee at 87 when she was up for Best Supporting Actress. (She lost to Kim Basinger, who won for L.A. Confidential.)
Keep in mind that for the film's 25th anniversary, a remastered version in 3D 4K HDR will hit cinemas just in time for Valentine’s Day next year. It's going to be a better watch than Avatar: The Way of Water, that's for damn sure.
Also on this day:
1984: A uniformed officer arrests US feminist Gloria Steinem during an anti-apartheid protest outside the South African Embassy in Washington in 1984.
"Pay attention, 007"
1999: The veteran British actor Desmond Llewelyn, who played quartermaster 'Q' in a total of 17 James Bond films, died in a car crash. He was 85.
Enjoy this moving tribute and see you tomorrow.