Of all the expeditions to Titanic since her discovery, perhaps none was as important or as infamous as the one conducted by Director, Writer, Producer James Cameron in 1995. Cameron, a long-time wreck diver and enthusiast, was captured by the idea of filming a movie around the Titanic.
“Romeo and Juliet on that ship” he had pitched to the executives at 20th Century Fox and Paramount Pictures. The film, which was to become legendary in the world of Titanic, facilitated not only a near life-sized replica of the entire exterior of the ship, but a dive down to the real Titanic for the purposes of blending the real ship with miniature and recreation.
This expedition saw the return of Titanic veteran Dr. Anatoly Sagalavech and the Mir submersibles aboard the Akademik Mstislav Keldysh. The Keldysh and the Mirs were to serve as both Cameron’s filming platform for the expedition, but also as a crucial backdrop for the plot of his film. The filming below saw not only the return of the Keldysh, MIRS, and crew, but also the return of Hollywood cinematographer and Titanic diver Al Giddings who had been there not 4 years prior.
This expedition, while primarily conducted for the purposes of the upcoming movie ‘TITANIC’ (Released to worldwide sensation in 97′) also saw the deepest interior exploration of the Titanic’s passenger areas up to that time.
The ROV ‘Snoop Dog’ was sent inside Titanic by James Cameron. The ROV itself, which was built specifically as a film prop, (A “Dope on a rope” as Cameron called it) did, however, have a fully functional camera as well as a few hundred feet of fiber-optic tether.
Temptation proved too great, and as a result James Cameron sent his camera deep within Titanic and captured several remarkable visuals on video, many of which were incorporated into his film. The now iconic fireplace within the sitting room of Cabin B-51, the ornate grillwork on the D-deck reception doors, as well as capturing on video much of the elegant 1st class reception room and promenade. The expedition was a smashing success and proved to be a premonition to the success which was to follow with its now iconic and legendary film production.
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