Cameron's Titanic engine room How did he do it


Status
Not open for further replies.

William Eadie

Member
Jan 17, 2004
2
0
131
Whenever I watch Cameron's Titanic I'm amazed how real the engine and boiler rooms appear to be. The massive metallic parts churning way and the attention to micro detail seem way beyond the capabilities of computer generation. Did Cameron use computer generation, build replicas, or find a real ship to create these scenes? On a personal note, I find these scenes
to be the most emotionally overwhelming since I know most of these brave souls will perish doing their duty,
 

Dan Cherry

Member
Dec 14, 1999
775
9
263
Hi, William,
a combination of the lot - the engine room from the ship Jeremiah O'Brien was used, and shipboard sound recordings were made using that ship for the movie's sound effects...
 

William Eadie

Member
Jan 17, 2004
2
0
131
Hi Dan: You've just told me the most amazing thing anyone could ever tell me. As you know the Jeremiah O'Brien is berthed in San Francisco where I live and is open to the public. This is like telling a Muslim, Mecca is just over the next hill! My only concern is when I take the tour I may not be able to contain my emotions. I can see it now: Who's that nut case weeping in the engine room? I can't thank you enough, sir.
 
Jul 9, 2000
58,661
871
563
Easley South Carolina
William, I've been to that engine room myself. Mecca it ain't. In fact, about all it has in common with the Titanic's engine room is that it used triple expansion engines. That's not to say that there isn't some similarity, but in order to make that room look like the Titanic's took a lot in the way of movie magic...and from what I understand, some CGI.

Still well worth a look. I'd visit the ship in a cold second if I ever got back to San Francisco.
 
Mar 3, 1998
2,745
261
358
William,

You've heard of "movie magic"...a resourceful director can take a bit of this, a slice of that, and string it all together to create an illusion of reality. As Dan said, the O'Brien contributed sounds and carefully crafted visuals. Cameron blocked out specific shots (like the piston rods) and added detail, like miniaturised catwalks, to make it appear more Titanic. Actors were shot in greenscreen, reduced in scale, and composited into the scene to complete the illusion of size. However, much of what you would recognise as Titanic's engine room came from a miniature working model constructed by his crew. I have a picture of the model on my website (Cape Race>Foxploration Titanic Expo Virtual Tour), if you'd like to see the scale of the model. Again, actors were composited into the model on film, giving it the illusion of reality.

The O'Brien contributed one more thing to the illusion...her bow wave and wake. O'Brien's filmed wake, of course, had to be multiplied and overlaid to make it look like it was generated by Titanic's three screws.

Parks
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Feb 9, 1999
5,343
67
398
ET member (although he hasn't posted here for a while) Ilya McVey prepared the engine room for Cameron's crew, William. He was working aboard her at the time.
 

Bob Godfrey

Member
Nov 22, 2002
6,043
107
333
UK
Inger, while you were here in Blighty I hope you got a chance to get emotional at Cricklewood Pumping Station, where they filmed the engine room scenes for ANTR. If anybody wants to know just what those engines were pumping - don't ask!
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Feb 9, 1999
5,343
67
398
Lol - I never had the pleasure, Bob! Y'know, I recall seeing it mentioned (goodness knows where - Simon Mills' book Titanic in Pictures? The Making of ANTR?) that Cricklewood Pumping Station was where those scenes were filmed, but it never actually accured to me to think what was going through those pipes...or to visit them! Have you done this field trip? It would make for some interesting photo ops...
 

Bob Godfrey

Member
Nov 22, 2002
6,043
107
333
UK
It's on my 'must get round to it' list, Inger! I don't know if the place is still intact, but it's listed by Brent Council's 'Film Department' (sounds impressive, but that's actually an office in the Town Hall) as a council property available for location filming - right after the Mecca Bingo Club, Kilburn. The charge is £500 per day. Send the dosh and I'll get down there with the camcorder.
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Feb 9, 1999
5,343
67
398
Camcorder and a bunch of blokes with wrenches to fiddle with the equipment I hope! Value for 500 quid. Just save the camera when a pipe ruptures.

"Everybody up top!"
 

Ryan Thompson

Member
Dec 6, 2005
262
0
181
Thanks, cool
happy.gif
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Similar threads

Similar threads