In the “Titanic” scene where Rose is lying on a piece of driftwood, most viewers — those who weren’t bawling their eyes out, or about to — saw a girl contemplating her survival and loss. When astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson saw the scene, all he could see was a blaring historical inaccuracy.
The starfield above Rose, played by Kate Winslet, would not have been the same as the one a real passenger at that latitude and longitude at that time of day in 1912 would have seen it, Tyson noted. He sent a “snarky” message to noted perfectionist James Cameron, who adjusted the 3D re-release of the film accordingly, according to Discovery.
“Neil deGrasse Tyson sent me quite a snarky e-mail saying that, at that time of year, in that position in the Atlantic in 1912, when Rose (Kate Winslet) is lying on the piece of driftwood and staring up at the stars, that is not the star field she would have seen,” Cameron told to Discovery.
“And with my reputation as a perfectionist, I should have known that and I should have put the right star field in. So I said ‘All right, send me the right stars for that exact time and I'll put it in the movie.’ ”
The Telegraph notes that the adjustment is the only major technical change to the drama. In a panel discussion, Tyson said that he felt he should hold Cameron accountable because of his infamous precision in the movie. Cameron took painstaking care to recreate every historical detail in the film, even using the original blueprint of the ship — but he didn’t take as much care when it came to the sky, apparently.
You can see the sky from the original movie below, but beware; If you’re one of the 10 people in the world who hasn’t seen this movie, the clip contains a pretty big spoiler.
Post film critic Anne Hornaday reviewed the “Titanic 3D” re-release, writing, “The added visual depth neither enhances or detracts from the charm of revisiting the film's young actors in their coltish prime, as heedless of their coming fame and ‘Titanic's’ record-breaking box office success as their characters are of that iceberg looming out in the dark North Sea.”
[via The Daily What]