|Directed by||Jean Negulesco|
|Produced by||Charles Brackett|
|Edited by||Louis R. Loeffler|
|Music by||Sol Kaplan|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
|April 16, 1953|
|Box office||$2,250,000 (US)|
Titanic is a 1953 American drama film directed by Jean Negulesco and starring Clifton Webb and Barbara Stanwyck. It centers on an estranged couple and other fictional passengers on the ill-fated maiden voyage of the RMS Titanic, which took place in April 1912.
It was the first Titanic film for 20th Century Fox, which also released the 1997 film of the same title internationally, while Paramount Pictures handled the North American distribution. The film met critical praise.
At the last minute, Richard Sturges (Clifton Webb), a wealthy expatriate in Europe, offers a Basque emigrant money for his steerage-class ticket (the lowest class) for the maiden voyage of the RMS Titanic—and succeeds. Once aboard, he seeks out his runaway wife, Julia (Barbara Stanwyck). He discovers she is trying to take their two unsuspecting children, 18-year-old Annette (Audrey Dalton) and ten-year-old Norman (Harper Carter), to her hometown of Mackinac Island, Michigan, to rear them as down-to-earth Americans rather than rootless elitists like Richard himself.
As the ship is prepared for departure, Sanderson Anthony Eustrel, the company representative (based on Bruce Ismay) suggests to captain Edward J. Smith (Brian Aherne) that a record-setting speedy passage would be welcomed.
Other passengers include Maude Young (based on real-life Titanic survivor Margaret Brown), a wealthy woman of a working-class origin (Thelma Ritter); social-climbing Earl Meeker (Allyn Joslyn); a 20-year-old Purdue University tennis player, Gifford "Giff" Rogers (Robert Wagner); and George S. Healey (Richard Basehart), a Catholic priest who has been defrocked for alcoholism.
One night on the bridge, the Captain asks Second Officer Charles Lightoller (Edmund Purdom) about a note by Murdoch regarding binoculars; Lightoller explains that the ship is shy on binoculars: they have just enough for the bridge, but none for the lookout.
When Annette learns Julia's intentions, she insists on returning to Europe with Richard on the next ship as soon as they reach America. Julia concedes that Annette is old enough to make her own decisions, but she insists on keeping custody of Norman. This angers Richard, forcing Julia to reveal that Norman is not his son, but rather the result of a one-night stand after one of their many bitter arguments. Upon hearing that, Richard declares to make no claim to Norman and does not want to see him again.
He joins Maude, Earl, and George Widener in the lounge to play auction bridge with them. The next morning, when Norman reminds him of a shuffleboard game they had arranged, he coldly brushes him off.
Meanwhile, Giff falls for Annette at first glance. At first she repulses his brash attempts to become better acquainted, but eventually warms to him. That night, Giff, Annette, and a group of young people sing and play the piano in the dining room, while Captain Smith watches from a corner table.
Second Officer Charles Lightoller expresses his concern to Captain Smith about the ship's speed when they receive two messages from other ships warning of iceberg sightings near their route. However, Smith assures him that the sea is clear and that the track is south of the reported icefield.
That night, the lookout spots an iceberg dead ahead. The crew tries to steer clear of danger, but the ship is gashed below the waterline and begins taking on water. When Richard finds Captain Smith, he insists on being told the truth: The ship is doomed and there are not enough lifeboats for everyone on board. He tells his family to dress warmly but properly; then they head outside.
Richard and Julia have a tearful reconciliation on the boat deck, as he places her, Annette, and Norman into a lifeboat. Unnoticed by Julia, Norman gives up his seat to an older woman and goes looking for Richard. When one of the lines becomes tangled, preventing the boat from being lowered, Giff climbs down and fixes it, only to lose his grip and fall into the water. Unconscious but alive, he is dragged onto the boat.
Meeker disguises himself as a woman to board a lifeboat, but Maude Young notices his shoes and unmasks him in front of the others. At the other end of the spectrum of courage and unselfishness, George Healey heads down into one of the boiler rooms to comfort injured crewmen.
As the Titanic is in her final moments, Norman and Richard find each other. Richard tells a passing steward that Norman is his "son" and then tells Norman that he has been proud of him every day of his life. Then they join the rest of the doomed passengers and the crew in singing the hymn "Nearer, My God, to Thee". As the last boiler explodes, the Titanic's bow plunges, pivoting her stern high into the air while she rapidly slides into the icy water. As dawn approaches, the survivors are seen in the lifeboats, waiting for help to arrive.
Walter Reisch says Darryl F. Zanuck called him and Charles Brackett in and told them, "I have Clifton Webb under contract, and we have CinemaScope, and I now want to do something big...Don't make Clifton a clown. I want him to start a new career as a character actor. Use all the young people we have on the lot, like Audrey Dalton and Robert Wagner..."
Reisch says he came up with the Titanic idea and pitched Clifton Webb as one of the 25 multi-millionaires who died on it. He said the film would be "60 percent truth, completely documentary"drawing on real-life accounts. A part was written for Thelma Ritter. Reisch says it was Richard Breen's idea to have an alcoholic priest.
Brackett, who co-wrote and produced the film, told the press that some of the stories had to be discarded "because they are too fantastic for movie audiences to believe".At one point the film was going to be called Nearer My God to Thee.
Filming began in late October 1952 and wrapped in early December 1952.
In a September 1952 news article, it was reported that Terry Moore was set to play the role of Annette Sturges, on condition that she would finish production of Man on a Tightrope on time.
According to the film aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a 91% "Fresh" rating, based on 10 reviews.
Variety reviewed the film positively stating, "but by the time the initial 45 or 50 minutes are out of the way, the impending disaster begins to take a firm grip on the imagination and builds a compelling expectancy".
Pauline Kael was not impressed with the picture's special effects. She wrote: "the actual sinking looks like a nautical tragedy on the pond in Central Park".
It is generally considered by historians that Titanic contains abundant historical inaccuracies. For example, the maiden voyage was not sold out, but actually barely more than half-booked, as shown by White Star Line records of 1912. Linda Koldau writes: "[...] the Titanic was far from being sold out and an additional passenger would easily have been able to purchase a first-class ticket ... Yet if one accepts that historical accuracy is not the point here, since the story is not at all that of the Titanic, it is a perfectly functioning script".
Also, Carpathia had arrived at the scene at around 4:10 a.m., and started picking up the survivors before sunrise. The rescue took several hours. In addition, Captain Smith was not awake at the time of the ship's collision with the iceberg, as shown in the film, but was awakened immediately thereafter and summoned to the bridge. The film shows, erroneously, that the iceberg penetrates the ship's port side.
The wireless from the Caronia warning Titanic of an iceberg ahead of it on the steamer track was never shown by the wireless operator Jack Phillips to the Captain or other officers, but in the film Phillips does show it to Captain Smith and First Officer Charles Lightoller, who then wonders in the film whether that is the same iceberg north of the steamer track previously warned of in a wireless from the Baltic, which Phillips had shown to his superior officers.
During the evacuation, the ship consistently blows its steam whistle and sounds a fire alarm. Titanic did not blow its whistle at all during the sinking and never had any alarms either.
The film makers decided to have the Titanic's band playing Londonderry Air and eventually Nearer, My God, to Thee (with the remaining passengers joining in), and not to mention the ship Californian that was in the vicinity of the real Titanic at the fatal night.
Titanic experts Fitch, Layton and Wormstedt judge that the film has some impressive special effects and in some ways recreates the feeling of being on board the Titanic. However, the film is not very accurate, although the advertising claimed the opposite. Most of the events shown are dramatically exaggerated or simply wrong.
The film won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, and was nominated for the Best Art Direction. The film was also nominated for the Directors Guild of America Award.
John Jacob Astor IV was an American business magnate, real estate developer, investor, writer, lieutenant colonel in the Spanish–American War, and a prominent member of the Astor family. He died in the sinking of the Titanic during the early hours of April 15, 1912. Astor was the richest passenger aboard the RMS Titanic and was thought to be among the richest people in the world at that time, with a net worth of roughly $87 million when he died.
John George Phillips, known as Jack Phillips was a British sailor and the senior wireless operator aboard the Titanic during her ill-fated maiden voyage in April 1912.
Edward John Smith was a British sea captain and naval officer. In 1880, he joined the White Star Line as an officer, beginning a long career in the British Merchant Navy. Smith went on to serve as the master of numerous White Star Line vessels. During the Second Boer War, he served in the Royal Naval Reserve, transporting British Imperial troops to the Cape Colony. Smith served as captain of the ocean liner Titanic, and went down with the ship when it sank on her maiden voyage.
Thomas Andrews Jr. was a British businessman and shipbuilder. He was managing director and head of the drafting department of the shipbuilding company Harland and Wolff in Belfast, Ireland.
William McMaster Murdoch, RNR was a Scottish sailor, who was the first officer on the RMS Titanic. He was the officer in charge on the bridge when the ship collided with an iceberg, and was one of the more than 1,500 people who died when the ship sank.
Charles Herbert Lightoller, was a British mariner and naval officer. He was the second officer on board the RMS Titanic and the most senior officer to survive the Titanic disaster. As the officer in charge of loading passengers into lifeboats on the port side, Lightoller strictly enforced the women and children only protocol, not allowing any male passengers to board the lifeboats unless they were needed as auxiliary seamen. Lightoller served as a commanding officer in the Royal Navy during World War I and was twice decorated for gallantry. During World War II, in retirement, he voluntarily provided his personal yacht, the Sundowner, and sailed her as one of the "little ships" that played a part in the Dunkirk evacuation.
Robert Hichens was a British sailor who was part of the deck crew on board the RMS Titanic when she sank on her maiden voyage on 15 April 1912. He was one of seven quartermasters on board the vessel and was at the ship's wheel when the Titanic struck the iceberg. He was in charge of Lifeboat #6, where he refused to return to rescue people from the water due to fear of the boat being sucked into the ocean with the huge suction created by Titanic, or swamped by other floating passengers. According to several accounts of those on the boat, including Margaret Brown, who argued with him throughout the early morning, Lifeboat 6 did not return to save other passengers from the waters. In 1906, he married Florence Mortimore in Devon, England; when he registered for duty aboard the Titanic, his listed address was in Southampton, where he lived with his wife and two children.
Frederick Fleet was a British sailor, crewman and a survivor of the sinking of the RMS Titanic. Fleet, along with fellow lookout Reginald Lee, was on duty when the ship struck the iceberg; Fleet first sighted the iceberg, ringing the bridge to proclaim: "Iceberg, right ahead!" Both Fleet and Lee survived the sinking, Fleet was the last surviving Lookout of the Titanic.
Henry Tingle Wilde, RNR was a British naval officer who was the chief officer of the RMS Titanic. He died when the ship sank on her maiden voyage in April 1912.
James Paul Moody was a British sailor, who served as Titanic's sixth officer; he did not survive.
Commander Harold Godfrey Lowe, RD was a Welsh naval officer. He was also the fifth officer of the Titanic, and was amongst the four of the ship's officers to survive the disaster.
Saved from the Titanic was a 1912 American silent short film starring Dorothy Gibson, an American film actress who survived the sinking of the RMS Titanic on April 15, 1912. Premiering in the United States just 31 days after the event, it was the earliest dramatization of the tragedy.
A Night to Remember is a 1958 British historical disaster docudrama film based on the eponymous 1955 book by Walter Lord. The film and book recount the final night of RMS Titanic, which sank on her maiden voyage after she struck an iceberg in 1912. Adapted by Eric Ambler and directed by Roy Ward Baker, the film stars Kenneth More as the ship's Second Officer Charles Lightoller and features Michael Goodliffe, Laurence Naismith, Kenneth Griffith, David McCallum and Tucker McGuire. It was filmed in the United Kingdom and tells the story of the sinking, portraying the main incidents and players in a documentary-style fashion with considerable attention to detail. The production team, supervised by producer William MacQuitty used blueprints of the ship to create authentic sets, while Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall and ex-Cunard Commodore Harry Grattidge worked as technical advisors on the film. Its estimated budget of up to £600,000 was exceptional and made it the most expensive film ever made in Britain up to that time. The film's score was written by William Alwyn.
RMS Titanic sank in the early morning hours of 15 April 1912 in the North Atlantic Ocean, four days into her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. The largest ocean liner in service at the time, Titanic had an estimated 2,224 people on board when she struck an iceberg at around 23:40 on Sunday, 14 April 1912. Her sinking two hours and forty minutes later at 02:20 ship's time on Monday, 15 April, resulted in the deaths of more than 1,500 people, making it one of the deadliest peacetime maritime disasters in history.
Titanic: The Legend Goes On, also released as Titanic: The Animated Movie, is a 2000 Italian animated musical film about the sinking of the RMS Titanic, written and directed by Camillo Teti.
Titanic Lifeboat No. 1 was a lifeboat from the steamship Titanic. It was the fifth boat launched to sea, over an hour after the liner collided with an iceberg and began sinking on 14 April 1912. With a capacity of 40 people, it was launched with only 12 aboard, the fewest to escape in any one boat that night.
Lifeboats played a crucial role during the sinking of the Titanic on 14–15 April 1912. The ship had 20 lifeboats that, in total, could accommodate 1,178 people, a little over half of the 2,209 on board the night it sank.
The sinking of the RMS Titanic on April 14–15, 1912 resulted in an inquiry by a subcommittee of the Commerce Committee of the United States Senate, chaired by Senator William Alden Smith. The hearings began in New York on April 19, 1912, later moving to Washington, D.C., concluding on May 25, 1912 with a return visit to New York.
"A Night to Remember" was an American television play broadcast live on March 28, 1956, as part of the NBC television series, Kraft Television Theatre. The play was based on Walter Lord's 1955 book, A Night to Remember, telling the story of the final night aboard the Titanic. George Roy Hill was the director.
An iceberg and the passenger steamer Titanic collided on 14 April 1912, causing the ship to sink in two hours and forty minutes. Of the approximately 2,200 people on board, over 1,500 did not survive the shipwreck. After the disaster, people became interested in the iceberg because they wanted to explain the circumstances of the collision and the resulting damage to the ship in more detail. Because of the Titanic disaster, an International Ice Patrol was founded to reduce the dangers of ice to shipping.