A List to Remember

On April 14, 1912 at 11:40 p.m., the RMS Titanic[1] famously hit an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic while on its maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. An estimated 1,517 of the 2,228 passengers and crew aboard the Titanic[2] died that night, making it the deadliest peacetime maritime disaster for 75 years (until the 1987 sinking of the Dona Paz in the Philippines[3]). While the Titanic was lost, it has not been forgotten.[4] So, on the anniversary of its sinking, we thought we’d go back and look at all of the movies, documentaries, and TV series that have told her story over the years. What better reference to start with for a retrospective of Titanic movies than[5](Though, it must be admitted that Wikipedia does offer a more comprehensive, if somewhat less entertaining, list).

James Cameron’s 1997 three-hour epic, Titanic, may be the best known film to tell the Titanic’s story (it’s certainly the most financially successful, earning $2.2 billion at the box office), but the most accurate dramatic depiction is likely 1958’s A Night to Remember (scoring 9 out of 10 for historical accuracy according to Prof. Mark Glancy of Queen Mary University of London, vs. Titanic’s 6/10), and the most authentic is unquestionably Saved from the Titanic, released on May 14, 1912, just 29 days after the disaster. It was written by and starred Dorothy Gibson, a 22-year-old actress who survived the sinking (making it on the first lifeboat launched) and appeared in the film in the same clothes she wore when she was later picked up by the RMS Carpathia.[6]

In addition to numerous movies, there have also been three Titanic-themed television series. The 1996 mini-series Titanicwas the first film to correctly depict the ship breaking into two pieces before sinking.[7] Mixed in amongst all of the dramatic retellings and documentaries are several animated programs and even a couple of musicals, including The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964), which tells the rags-to-riches life story of Titanic survivor Margaret “Molly” Brown. Molly gained her nickname thanks to her selfless efforts to help other Titanic victims, first aboard the Titanic as the lifeboats were being launched, then while in a lifeboat herself waiting for rescue, and again after being picked up by the Carpathia. While aboard the Carpathia, she even raised money among the first class passengers to benefit the less fortunate survivors.

So, if you’re ready to watch the Titanic sink (and even rise) again, you have many fine options.

Titanic Movies and TV Programs

[1] “RMS” stands for Royal Mail Ship, indicating that the Titanic, along with its Olympic-class sister ships the RMS Olympic and RMS Britannic, carried cargo under contract from the UK’s Royal Mail.

[2] Fun Fact: Violet Jessop sailed on all three of the Olympic-class sister ships and survived both the sinking of the Titanic in 1912 and the sinking of the Britannic on November 21, 1916, when it struck a mine during WWI.

[3] The Dona Paz was a passenger ferry traveling between Leyte and Manila when it struck an oil tanker in the Tablas Strait, burned, and sank, killing as many as 4,000 people.

[4] Technically, it has also been found: in 1985 by a French-American search team led by Robert Ballard.

[5] Billed as “The Past and Now”, is travel-themed Web site launched in 2008 by Michael L. Grace – appropriately enough, a former writer for the TV series The Love Boat (1977–1986).

[6] The RMS Carpathia, operated by Cunard Line, competitors of Titanic’s White Star Line, was the first ship to respond to Titanic’s radio distress call, despite the fact that SS Californian was closer, but ignored the Titanic’s call.

[7] Survivor accounts were inconsistent on this point, and it wasn’t until the wreckage was found in 1985 that historians could be certain that the ship split before it sank in two pieces, now resting 600m (⅓ of a mile) apart.

Title Year EDIR ID
Saved from the Titanic 1912 10.5240/C4C3-4C3F-94D9-1029-1B7B-H
La hantise 1912 10.5240/592C-7F1C-FE49-0C30-A003-C
In Nacht und Eis 1912 10.5240/BEE6-2DED-803B-E19A-8CBB-O
Atlantic 1929 10.5240/CF90-B79E-DA1C-3D18-FB24-A
Cavalcade 1933 10.5240/A041-4C90-41D9-B738-16CC-B
History is Made at Night 1937 10.5240/7054-82BD-071C-E4B0-8FB9-3
Titanic 1943 10.5240/5B20-EC70-9F2F-7359-D04A-I
Titanic 1953 10.5240/D1EB-E91F-BE2E-CA02-C0E3-3
A Night to Remember 1958 10.5240/B7BA-228D-2220-FD3C-236F-A
The Unsinkable Molly Brown 1964 10.5240/E39C-E667-F43C-9CB6-985D-C
S.O.S. Titanic 1979 10.5240/F89D-BE6B-4B3D-C2FF-C5CB-9
Raise the Titanic! 1980 10.5240/9FB8-7BC7-E8FA-CCE6-9161-M
Titanic 1984 10.5240/D545-F224-5939-8271-02D2-G
Secrets of the Titanic 1986 10.5240/2F2D-CEFE-DF80-2891-66B4-N
Titanica 1992 10.5240/FB35-DDD4-20C8-0790-A529-N
Titanic 1993 10.5240/74A0-1680-B2B0-9054-5D2C-9
Titanic 1996 10.5240/84D6-A6FD-3D98-812F-975F-K
The Investigation Begins 1996 10.5240/3D80-A43B-41D7-CF92-C9C9-R
No Greater Love 1996 10.5240/EB54-E6BC-A3B7-AAEA-3CE6-R
Titanic: Anatomy of a Disaster 1997 10.5240/FBB7-CDA8-9285-8A34-ECC8-U
Titanic 1997 10.5240/29E6-2D4B-B704-2B69-441F-8
Titanic: Untold Stories 1998 10.5240/9EF3-1B99-9B2C-C3AB-F6F5-D
La femme de chambre du Titanic 1998 10.5240/F5AC-38F5-D918-0F5B-493C-M
Titanic: Answers from the Abyss 1999 10.5240/4CEE-3261-8FBE-82A5-AFCE-A
The Legend of the Titanic 1999 10.5240/6F39-3AD6-9895-B1E7-89ED-F
Deep Inside Titanic 1999 10.5240/93F2-95DF-1BA6-508B-5F07-U
Titanic: The Animated Movie 2000 10.5240/A469-8529-9859-D756-C0FF-M
Britannic 2000 10.5240/27C7-6C34-AC16-060F-A9BE-2
Titanic: 90 Years Below 2002 10.5240/E627-ED93-A0ED-44D9-4F38-3
Titanic II 2002 10.5240/7BDC-E83A-C8A4-32CE-AF2D-4
Ghosts of the Abyss 2003 10.5240/A82C-D240-55C2-98A4-12EE-8
In Search of the Titanic 2004 10.5240/A28C-2FEE-6A7A-AE0B-FF6E-5
Titanic: Birth of a Legend 2005 10.5240/A959-E2E1-9B87-2CE7-B12D-Z
Titanic: Birth of a Legend 2005 10.5240/A959-E2E1-9B87-2CE7-B12D-Z
Last Mysteries of the Titanic with James Cameron 2005 10.5240/174A-2B8B-20F3-098D-E711-R
Titanic’s Achilles Heel 2007 10.5240/78AE-038F-4DEA-214C-F392-P
Titanic: Ballard’s Secret Mission 2008 10.5240/7508-9493-4F85-85D6-0FAE-D
Titanic II 2010 10.5240/3213-896C-EC0C-73D0-9F35-Y
Saving the Titanic 2011 10.5240/1DF6-D93B-D9B7-C107-2869-Q
Titanic’s Nuclear Secret 2012 10.5240/9744-1883-3B68-3B30-8FC7-3
Titanic: The Final Word with James Cameron 2012 10.5240/59A3-F083-31BF-1F74-DD5D-T
Titanic: The Aftermath 2012 10.5240/3549-FAD5-9D26-D446-44F6-U
Titanic: Case Closed 2012 10.5240/8D3F-EB85-4BED-32F9-F3A3-E
Titanic: Blood and Steel 2012 10.5240/41C3-A2E0-6130-9BC3-E2A8-K
Titanic Requiem 2012 10.5240/33BB-4258-627E-326A-8456-B
Titanic at 100: Mystery Solved 2012 10.5240/0156-309D-7B61-8034-E711-I
Titanic 2012 10.5240/C060-0B6B-8F2E-8686-4126-Q
Titanic 2012 10.5240/AF24-054B-F371-BAC3-21B9-N
Save the Titanic with Bob Ballard 2012 10.5240/AE41-6546-C066-749D-2252-1
Holmes & Watson 2018 10.5240/2007-D17B-5BAE-0783-DFCD-H
Back to the Titanic 2020 10.5240/BE9A-CCFD-46C4-C052-5C09-S