Master & Commander Save the Surprise

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The replica of the HMS Rose (which was the basis for the fictional "HMS Surprise") that was used for the battle scenes in "Master & Commander" still exists at Fox Studios Baja. It is not economical to keep it there for much longer. For the same reasons, the "Acheron" has already been destroyed. If anyone knows of a purpose that the "HMS Surprise" can be put to, and/or has the money to make it happen, please let me know...I'll pass the info to where it will do the most good.

A lot of you have expressed dismay over the destruction of the Titanic set. Unlike the Titanic set, however, the "HMS Surprise" is a floating vessel on its own. It doesn't have interiors, but I would imagine those could be built out. We're looking for a chance to save this bit of film history, so if anyone has any constructive ideas, now is the time to discuss them.

I misunderstood the point of your post from the title, and made a distinct effort *not* to read it until I'd seen the movie- which I have just finished. I understand now. :)

I too, hope that she can be saved.

Actually, what you see at the Embarcadero in San Diego is the HMS Rose, the replica but fully-functional replica that the HMS Surprise is based upon. The HMS Rose was used for the at-sea sailing portions of the film. When I last posted, I was concerned about the replica built by Fox for the on-deck and fighting sequences, which never left the tank at Baja Studios. This is a 1:1 scale floating replica, which is a copy of the HMS Rose in every exterior aspect, but there are no interiors inside the hull. A similar copy of the Acheron was also built and when I last checked, that had been destroyed after filming wrapped. The Baja studio chief was looking for someone to take the Fox-built "HMS Surprise," because he couldn't afford to keep it on the lot. I haven't checked on it since I last posted, so I don't know if the replica has found a good home or had to be broken up.

I need to get downtown and visit the HMS Rose. I saw it before it was opened for tours, but haven't had time to go back since it opened. My last carrier, the USS Midway, will also be opening for the public this summer, so I'll probably see both Midway and the Rose in one visit.

I'm reading this wrong, obviously, but are there TWO Rose replicas? Or is the one in San Diego the same one that was at Fox Studios? Because I'm a bit confused on this one...

But to be honest, if the ship can't be considered a fully functional replica, I don't think most people would consider it worth the time or the money to fit her out fully, if she hasn't already been made for that purpose. Which is a damned shame, I'll admit...what probably saved the Grand Turk from being scrapped after the first Hornblower series was filmed for A&E was the fact that it is fully functional. Of course, it was designed for the series in the first place, but the fact that the builders decided to look ahead and construct a vessel that could last for a few years, and not simply be scrapped after filming, that was nice to see.

There is the fully functional replica of the HMS Rose, that was built long before "Master & Commander." For years, its home was Boston, but financial hardship caused a change of ownership and she now berths temporarily in San Diego.

For the film, M&C, another replica was built, based off the HMS Rose (so that scenes with the new replica could be spliced with scenes of the old replica). The new replica was fully framed, had all the exterior detail of the Rose and able to float in the tank at the Fox Baja studio. Unlike the Rose, however, the new replica ("Surprise") had no interior fittings. Also, it was especially designed to take controlled damage during fighting sequences that the Rose replica could not.

The original replica of the Rose is now a temporary tourist attraction in San Diego. The Surprise is -- when I last checked -- in need of a home. It could be towed to another home and her interior completed properly, to serve as a living history museum or something of the like. No, the Surprise was not fully functional, but her hull was solidly built (I actually took pictures of her framing when I was down in Baja shooting "Ghosts of the Abyss") and not really meant to be scrapped after filming, like the Titanic set was. The studio chief wouldn't be trying so hard to find a new home for this Surprise, if she wasn't worth saving.

Hopefully, as of this writing, he has found a home for the Surprise. Next time I get a chance, I'll ask.

Hey guys,

This is a little off topic but what did y'all think of the movie? I thought it was great, and I'd like to see a sequel made. That would put an end to the question of what to do with the Surprise. However, I've heard that the movie did not do as well at the box office as it should have. Tis a shame, it's a great movie.

As for the Rose, I'm hoping to see it when I'm in San Diego the first week of August. Cross your fingers!
H.M.S. is the one docked in San Diego. If anybody gets a chance, go see this ship...8 bucks is all it will cost you. It's worth it.
Parks, do you know whatever happened to that replica? Over on, someone recently posted a satellite image of the Fox Baja studio with a sailing ship replica in the back lot. Not sure of the date, though.

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