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Titanic Facts

Read this article to learn historical and movie facts about the Titanic.
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The Titanic sinking into the ocean

The Ship vs. The Film

• Titanic, the ship, was one of the largest movable objects ever built, measuring in at 883 feet long (1/6 of a mile), 92 feet wide, 46,328 tons, and 104 feet high, from keel to bridge. The model in James Cameron's film was built 90 percent to scale.

• The ship cost an unprecedented $7.5 million to build—that translates to $400 million today. The film cost an unprecedented $250 million and has grossed more than $600 million domestically and more than $1.8 billion worldwide.

• The ship took 3 years to build, approximately the same amount of time it took to make the film.

• It took the ship approximately 2 hours, 40 minutes to sink. Titanic, the film, runs 3 hours, 14 minutes.

Historical and movie facts about the world's most famous ship

by Beth Rowen

In 1912, the Titanic, a steamship in England's White Star Line, set out on its doomed maiden voyage, with 2,227 enthusiastic passengers and crew members on board for the history-making trip from Southampton, England, to New York City. Only 705 would survive the ship's collision with a massive iceberg.

The "unsinkable" ocean liner hit an iceberg late in the evening on April 14 and sunk in the early hours of April 15.

Titanic Facts

Here are some of the most interesting facts about the ship and its fateful journey:

  • The Titanic was designed to hold 32 lifeboats, though only 20 were on board; White Star management was concerned that too many boats would sully the aesthetic beauty of the ship.
  • Survivors were rescued by the Carpathia, which was 58 miles southeast of Titanic when it received the distress call.
  • Titanic boasted electric elevators, a swimming pool, a squash court, a Turkish Bath, and a gymnasium with a mechanical horse and mechanical camel.
  • The wreckage of Titanic was located in 1985, 12,500 feet down, about 350 miles (531 km) southeast of Newfoundland, Canada.
  • A first class (parlor suite) ticket on Titanic cost $4,350, which translates into $90,000 in 2006 USD.
  • Lillian Gertrud Asplund, the last American survivor of the Titanic tragedy, died in Massachusetts on May 6, 2006, at age 99. Her mother and a brother also survived, but her father and three other brothers perished.
  • Two other survivors live in England.
  • Eleanor Shuman, who was the inspiration for Kate Winslet's Rose, died on March 7, 1998, at age 87.

These days, the word Titanic immediately conjures up images of the starry-eyed Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet passionately embracing as they lean precariously over the bow of the ship, with the wind in their sprightly young faces and the world at their feet.

With all the hoopla over the epic's mega-budget, mega-box-office gross and record-tying slew of Oscars, the film Titanic has become itself a cultural phenomenon—nearly as monumental as the event on which it was based.

Millions of Dollars, Millions of Fans

Indeed, Titanic director James Cameron meticulously replicated the minutiae of the original ship, from chandeliers and wallpaper that adorn the posh dining rooms down to the ashtrays.

The fact remains that Americans have dished out more than $600 million','people spent more than $1.8 billion worldwide not out of interest in learning more about the disaster, but out of fascination with the Hollywood spectacle.

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