It has been 26 years since James Cameron’s Titanic was released in theatres, a film that would go on to take over the spot of the highest-grossing film of all time for a long period. However, the one thing that still boggles the minds of the fans is whether there was space on Kate Winslet’s door for Leonardo DiCaprio.
A still of Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio from Titanic (1997)
When the Titanic sank, Kate Winslet’s Rose climbed on top of a floating door to save herself from the icy cold water of the ocean. However, Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jack ended up dying from hypothermia. Ever since then fans have debated whether there was space for Jack or not. Unfortunately, among the debate came fat-phobic comments toward Oscar-winner, Kate Winslet.
Kate Winslet Fat-Shamed by Fans
Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio as Rose and Jack
It is rather baffling that a real person would have to hear hurtful comments about something their characters were a part of. Kate Winslet, who is one of the finest actresses in Hollywood, is no stranger to this. Fans have blamed Winslet and Rose’s weight for not allowing Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jack onto the makeshift raft, forgetting that Rose was a fictional character
Since Winslet was only in her twenties when Titanic came out, the comments ended up affecting her deeply and making her insecure. In fact, even the journalists didn’t leave her alone.
Addressing the issue on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Winslet stated,
“Apparently I was too fat. Why were they so mean to me? They were so mean. I wasn’t even f*cking fat…If I could turn back the clock I would have used my voice in a completely different way. I would have said to journalists, I would have responded, I would have said, ‘Don’t you dare treat me like this. I’m a young woman, my body is changing, I’m figuring it out, I’m deeply insecure, I’m terrified, don’t make this any harder than it already is.’ That’s bullying, you know, and actually borderline abusive, I would say.”
In a different interview, this time with The Sunday Times, Winslet made a shocking revelation stating that her agent would get calls asking about the actress’ weight even when she was young.
“It can be extremely negative. People are subject to scrutiny that is more than a young, vulnerable person can cope with. But in the film industry it is really changing. When I was younger my agent would get calls saying, ‘How’s her weight?’ I kid you not. So it’s heartwarming that this has started to change.”
While Winslet is right about the fact that the entertainment industry has grown to be more inclusive and accepting, there is still a long way to go before it reaches its optimum state.
James Cameron Puts an End to the Debate Once and For All
James Cameron conducts the door experiment
In order to put an end to the ongoing debate, director James Cameron took matters into his own hands. He recreated the exact moment between Jack and Rose to find out if the floating door could’ve actually supported both lovers or not.
He conducted a full scientific study with the help of a hypothermia expert. The exact same raft was built that was seen in the film and two stunt people with body mass equal to that of Jack and Rose were hired.
Talking to The Toronto Sun, Cameron revealed his findings,
“We took two stunt people who were the same body mass of Kate and Leo and we put sensors all over them and inside them and we put them in ice water and we tested to see whether they could have survived through a variety of methods and the answer was, there was no way they both could have survived. Only one could survive.”
So there you have it from the filmmaker himself – Jack and Rose would have both died if the two of them tried to get on the door. Clearly, Jack knew this and decided to let Rose be the one to make it out alive. No wonder it is one of the saddest moments of cinematic history!
You can stream Titanic on Netflix.
Source: Happy Sad Confused podcast