JUBILEE The Forgotten Titanic Musical

Jim Kalafus

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Dec 3, 2000
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Has anyone out there seen, and is anyone in possession of photos depicting, the ca. 1981 cast-of-thousands extravaganza "Jubilee" which featued, among MANY things, Bob Mackie designed costumes, and a 40-foot repro of the Titanic?

"Jubilee" was the replacement for the incredibly long running, and successful, floorshow "Hallelujah Hollywood" at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. "Hallelujah" had run for seven years and had been seen by five million people. "Jubilee" was going to be twice as big, twice as flashy, twice as memorable and, like the prior floorshow, a tribute to MGM production values. The 40 foot long model of the Titanic was ceremoniously hauled through the streets of Vegas to the hotel, upon completion, and stored there while the final musical and dance rehearsals were held.

When the MGM Grand burned with the loss of 85 lives in late 1980 (on the same day the "Who Shot JR?" question was finally answered) press attention was rightfully centered on the human toll, and on the standard litany of violations, etc etc etc. The Titanic model rated nary a mention in the press. When the hotel was restored and reopened (in mid 1981, under the auspices of Cary Grant) "Jubilee" made its debut, but so far reviews of the musical and photos of the Titanic model (if, in fact, it survived the fire) have proved elusive.

The Titanic storyline was to be in three scenes and, somehow, encorporated two World War One fighter planes into the production. How? Why? I have no idea. But, I suspect that my oft-repeated belief that we recently reached the stylistic nadir of Titanic-as-pop-culture (no names.... you get my drift) might be proved incorrect.
 

Jim Kalafus

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Dec 3, 2000
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Oh my. No, I did not see that. Thanks, Jason! So, it ran for at least 17 years!

And, where is the 40 foot Titanic now?
 
Feb 4, 2007
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Denver, Colorado, United States
Yes, try 26+ years. It's still running right now actually. You could go see it tonight if you wanted to....oh yeah, you have to be at least 18 years old though 'cause it's got a bit o' bosom showing. Dunno if you'd be let in.
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Have no idea where the model is now. That would be an interesting hunt - 40' worth of ship doesn't just disappear (unless it burned of course).
 
Jun 6, 2003
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Saw it in 1995- good dirty fun- I remember the Dolly sisters in their underwear distracted the crew and caused the ship to hit the iceberg. When I protested this idiotic scenario someone at the table asked if I was a college professor- I said no- merely a Titanic enthusiast who knew the Dolly sisters were not listed passengers!!
 

Jim Kalafus

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Dec 3, 2000
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Oooohhh....so that proved the inspiration for "Jack and Rose Appear on Deck Giddy With Post-Coital Glee and Distract the Lookouts!" Gee, not only was it a stupid moment, it was a stupid UNORIGINAL moment!

So, how was the 40 ft Titanic replica?