It’s quite remarkable that James Cameron’s Titanic is still in the top three highest-grossing films of all time. With over $2.1 billion earned worldwide, the motion picture has only been surpassed by two other movies since: another Cameron blockbuster, Avatar (in 2009), and the Marvel heavyweight Avengers: Endgame in 2019.
Titanic gave viewers an engaging love story portrayed by two rising Hollywood stars against the backdrop of one of the grandest ocean liners of all time. With many subscription-based streaming services now seeking to recreate iconic movies as series, it could be time for a brand-new, high-budget Titanic offering for television.
One of the Biggest Films of All Time
Titanic was hugely successful upon its original release when it amassed more than $1.84 billion worldwide. This was simply unheard of at the time, and it was the first film to reach the $1 billion mark. It was later re-released twice, which helped to add to its overall box office revenue. The first re-release was in 2012 to commemorate the centennial anniversary of the sinking, and the second re-release was in 2017 to mark the 20th anniversary of the film. These subsequent screenings helped to market the picture to a greater number of people and a more diversified audience.
On top of its commercial success, Titanic was lauded by critics and swept up award wins and nominations across the board. The general consensus was that Cameron had done an accurate job of depicting the legendary ship, owing to years of his obsessive research into the tragic sinking. Critics also praised the way he combined stunning visuals with traditional drama. Titanic earned countless accolades at the major ceremonies, including 14 Academy Awards.
The legacy of Cameron’s film continues to this day, and the blockbuster has inspired other ventures such as video games that help to keep it alive in popular culture. These include the likes of 1912 Titanic Mystery, Titanic: Honor and Glory, and Titanic VR. There’s also a Titanic slot, which is one of the top-rated Vegas slots online. The game from Bally features the iconic ship on the thumbnail to draw players in, along with the logo from the movie. Players are made to feel as though they’ve stepped back in time when they spin the reels, and it’s an immersive experience.
Streaming Services Looking to Recreate Classics as Series
The reason why the time could be ripe for a Titanic television series is owing to the fact that streaming services are desperately seeking already popular content to turn into new profit-makers. There’s fierce competition between rival subscription platforms owned by the likes of Netflix, Amazon, HBO, and Disney. It’s a well-known fact that a potential award-winning series could be enough to help them win a vast number of viewers from their rivals.
An example of this was seen recently after Game of Thrones came to an end on HBO. Netflix and Amazon both scrambled to get the rights for source material that they believed they could transform into the next fantasy epic. The former opted to make a series based on The Witcher, a collection of novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski. The latter decided that it would try to take advantage of the success of Lord of the Rings, and opted to develop a brand new series set in Middle Earth.
There have been numerous other television series that have acted as prequels, sequels, or spinoffs to legendary films. Bates Motel is a prequel to Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, Westworld was based on the 1973 film of the same name, and From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series is an adaptation of the 1996 movie. Repurposing ideas from films for television is nothing new, and it’s more of a question of which classic will receive the small screen treatment next.
Would Have to be a Limited Series
Because Titanic has a definite ending in which the ship sinks and most of the characters die, there is no scope for a Titanic television series to run beyond one season. This may make it a less enticing prospect for producers as they know they won’t be able to milk it year after year. However, there does seem to be a trend with a lot of limited series cropping up at the moment. Many of them have been highly regarded by critics as well.
Some of the top limited series of recent times include The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix, Chernobyl on HBO, and WandaVision on Disney+. All of these have been major boosts to their respective streaming platforms, so there is no reason why a Titanic offering couldn’t have the same effect.
Lovers of legendary ships and film fanatics alike are probably desperate to see a television version of Titanic. With successful films of yesteryear being transformed into TV shows left, right, and center, it wouldn’t be surprising to see a high-budget Titanic offering for the small screen in the years ahead.