December 19, 1997: Titanic released in theaters and celebrates its 25th anniversary today.
The timeless story chronicling the romance between Kate Winslet’s Rose, an all-encompassing high society woman with a penchant for heartlessly throwing a priceless inheritance to the bottom of the sea instead of passing it on to her granddaughter and Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jack , a human popsicle that should re-emerge from the depths anytime soon given our laissez-faire attitude towards global warming, celebrates its 25th anniversary today.
Indeed, James Cameron’s hit epic originally sailed into domestic theaters in December 1997 and played out over several months internationally. It became a box office phenomenon and won 11 Oscars, 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 used 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 of the most hardcore facts Titanic fans will know, but more casual viewers might not:
It cost more to make the movie than the ship. They spent $200 million to make the movie in 1997, while the ship cost $7.5 million. As TIME pointed out in 2016, that figure would be $180 million after adjusting for inflation.
During the production of the film, his name was Planet Ice.
Gloria Stuart, who played Older Rose in the film’s bookends, was the only Titanic actor who was alive on the maiden voyage of the Titanic in 1912. Stuart was almost 2 years old when the RMS Titanic perished in the Atlantic. In 1998, she also became the oldest Oscar nominee at 87 when she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress. (She lost to Kim Basinger, who won for LA Confidential.)
Keep in mind that for the film’s 25th anniversary, a 3D 4K HDR remastered version will hit cinemas just in time for Valentine’s Day next year. It will be a better watch than Avatar: The Way of the Waterit’s damn safe.
Also that day:
1984: A uniformed officer arrests an American feminist Gloria Steinem during an anti-apartheid demonstration outside the South African Embassy in Washington in 1984.
1999: Veteran British actor Desmond Llewelyn, who played Quartermaster ‘Q’ in a total of 17 James Bond films, died in a car accident. He was 85 years old.
Enjoy this moving tribute and see you tomorrow.