It’s Been Two Decades: What Is the Titanic Cast Doing Today?
The star-studded film Titanic became a blockbuster upon its release in 1997, bolstering the careers of already-famous actors as well as launching those of fresh faces like Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet into true stardom. In fact, the film received so much acclaim that it became the highest grossing movie of all time when it was released and held that record for 13 years. Read here to find out what all the stars of the film are up to now that it’s been two decades since the release of this movie, one that made “our hearts go on” forever. From the main characters to minor ones, we’ve made sure we haven’t missed a thing. Expect some fun facts too!
1. Leonardo DiCaprio as Jack Dawson
Titanic’s passionate, adventurous, and super romantic Jack Dawson rendered Leonardo DiCaprio Hollywood’s most desirable star . The film garnered Leo great success as he went on to star in many top-grossing films afterward, some of which were Man in the Iron Mask (1998), Catch Me If You Can (2002), The Aviator (2004), Blood Diamond (2006), The Departed (2006), The Great Gatsby (2013), and Wolf of Wall Street (2013).
Despite DiCaprio’s household name in the world of acting, he didn’t bag an Oscar despite all his nominations, until 2016, when he finally won the Best Actor Award for his performance as Hugh Glass in The Revenant. The blue-eyed heartthrob also established the non-profit Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 1998, dedicated to spreading environmental awareness about global warming, renewable energy, and preserving the world’s biodiversity. In 2016, he produced and appeared in his own documentary about the devastating effects of global warming and the possible solutions called Before the Flood.
2. Kate Winslet as Rose DeWitt Bukater
Who knew that Titanic’s director James Cameron was reluctant to cast the talented Kate Winslet as the free-spirited socialite Rose DeWitt Bukater?! Well, thanks to her determination, not only did Titanic go down as one of the most successful films ever produced, one for which Winslet was nominated Best Actress; her acting career continued to flourish.
The English actress has since landed numerous roles in films including Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), Finding Neverland (2004), and Little Children (2006). The former co-stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet went on to reunite as lovers on screen in the film Revolutionary Road (2008), but the love story didn’t end as we had hoped once again. She also won an Oscar for Best Actress that same year for playing a Nazi camp guard in The Reader. Expect another reunion of Winslet and James Cameron in his 2020 film, Avatar 2.
3. Billy Zane as Caledon Hockley
While most audience members were rooting for Jack Dawson, others were quite enraptured by Cal’s good looks and money. Come on, when he gifts Rose the Heart of the Ocean necklace it made up for his awful behavior and the fact that he doesn’t make such a decent partner, right? Okay jokes aside, Billy Zane’s character might not have been so nice in Titanic, but his acting skills continued to impress.
The actor and producer went on to work on the film The Believer (2001), in which he starred as a neo-Nazi alongside Ryan Gosling. That same year, Zane also made a cameo appearance as himself in Ben Stiller’s Zoolander. Zane played a recurring role on the TV show Charmed, made an appearance in one episode of Community in 2015, and even showed off his talent in theater on Broadway in Chicago as the lawyer Billy Flynn. His latest project was in 2017, when he appeared in a KFC commercial.
4. Frances Fisher as Ruth DeWitt Bukater
Frances Fisher played Rose’s money-hungry mother who tries to force her daughter to marry Cal because they were facing dire poverty. Can’t blame her for that, right? The British-American actress’s career actually began in the late ’70s in theater, and she landed her first role on TV as detective Deborah ‘Red’ Saxon in The Edge of Night daytime soap opera around the same time.
Following her role in Titanic, Fisher starred in a string of films playing a tenacious woman each time, such as: True Crime (1999), House of Sand and Fog (2003), Laws of Attraction (2004), In the Valley of Elah (2007), The Kingdom (2007), Jolene (2008), The Lincoln Lawyer (2011), and The Host (2013). She also appeared in the ABC drama series Resurrection between 2014 and 2015. Her latest appearance was in Woman in Gold (2015).
5. Victor Garber as Thomas Andrews
While Victor Garber didn’t enjoy a wonderful fate in Titanic, playing RMS Titanic’s architect Thomas Andrews who goes down with the ship, Garber was a famous actor before the film and continues to enjoy a successful career.
Some of Garber’s other film work includes Annie (1999), Legally Blonde (2001), Tuck Everlasting (2002), Green Lantern: First Light (2009), The Town (2010) Ice Quake (2010), Argo (2012), and Big Game (2015). After appearing in two of Ben Affleck’s films (The Town and Argo), Garber became very close to Affleck and Jennifer Garner, even serving as the officiant at their wedding and the godfather of their daughter Violet. His latest acting venture was in the TV show Legends of Tomorrow until 2017.
6. Danny Nucci as Fabrizio De Rossi
Daniel (Danny) Antonelli Nucci plays Jack Dawson’s best friend Fabrizio De Rossi in Titanic. They both win last-minute tickets to board the RMS Titanic during a game of poker, but unfortunately De Rossi doesn’t face such a bright future.
After Titanic, the Italian-born actor starred in several notable TV shows such as Without a Trace, Criminal Minds, The Mentalist, and CSI:NY, to mention a few. He currently plays Mike Foster in the family drama TV series The Fosters.
7. Kathy Bates as Molly Brown
Only one of Hollywood’s greatest icons could be good enough to play “The Unsinkable Molly Brown.” Kathy Bates’s character is based on the real “new-money” socialite Margaret Brown who showed true bravery in the face of tragedy. Bates portrays how Molly insisted her lifeboat turn back to help other passengers survive the sinking.
Kathy Bates was already a star and Academy Award winner before Titanic, but she never slowed down, appearing in many films and TV shows. She played Ms. Hannigan in Annie (1999) alongside Titanic co-star Victor Garber and joined forces with Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in Revolutionary Road (2008). Since 2013, Bates has starred in the TV series American Horror Story, for which she won an Emmy Award playing Delphine LaLaurie. She has remained on the show, playing a new character each season.
8. Suzi Amis Cameron as Lizzy Calvert
Yes, as the name suggests, Suzi Amis Cameron married Titanic‘s director James Cameron in 2000. The two met on set when she played Rose’s granddaughter, who takes the elderly Rose to the research ship as part of the second plot line of the movie. Soon after acting in Titanic, the actress and former model retired from acting following her appearance in the film Judgment Day in 1999.
In 2005, Suzi turned her attention to activism and opened a non-profit vegan school with her sister Rebecca Amis. The former actress then founded Red Carpet Green Dress in 2009, an initiative which offers recycled, re-purposed, and eco-friendly fashion for red carpet events. Her latest project is called Plant Power Task Force, an organization she founded with her husband to raise awareness about animal agriculture and its effect on climate change. In 2018, Suzi will be publishing her book OMD: Swap One Meal a Day to Get Healthy, Live Longer, and Save the Planet.
9. Bill Paxton as Brock Lovett
Bill Paxton portrayed the treasure hunter Brock Lovett who launches a search for the legendary Heart of the Ocean necklace, supposedly hidden within the wreck of Titanic, with his team on the Keldysh. This is just one of the many roles Paxton is remembered for.
Paxton enjoyed a celebrated acting career in many films. After playing Lovett the treasure hunter, he starred in Vertical Limit (2000), Edge of Tomorrow (2014), and Nightcrawler (2014). He also appeared in the HBO drama series Big Love and Hatfields & McCoys as Randall McCoy in the History Channel miniseries, earning him a Primetime Emmy Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award. His final film role was in The Circle in 2017.
10. Gloria Stuart as Rose DeWitt Bukater
Gloria Stuart narrated Rose’s story as part of the modern-day plot in the film. James Cameron chose to create her character in order to connect the past and the present. Stuart, cast when she was 87, was made to look even older for the role. Her sterling performance garnered her an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
Stuart lived a long and colorful life boasting a successful acting career spanning 70 years on stage and on screen. She was also an artist and fine painter. Her last role was in the film Land of Plenty (2004). The larger-than-life actress celebrated her 100th birthday with James Cameron and his wife Suzy Amis in 2010 before passing away later that year.
11. Jason Barry as Thomas “Tommy” Ryan
The Irish-born actor Jason Barry is most famous for his role as the Irish third-class passenger Tommy who befriends Jack Dawson and Fabrizio De Rossi in Titanic. Tommy also faces an unfortunate fate in the movie during all the commotion during sinking.
Barry went on to appear in the Irish crime series Love/Hate as Dano and won several awards for his performance in the film The Still Life (2006). In 2016, Barry performed voice over work for the video game Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. When he isn’t acting, Barry is an avid marathon runner.
12. David Warner as Spicer Lovejoy
Known for playing both romantic and villainous characters on stage, in film and TV, David Warner took on the role as the villain in Titanic as Cal’s bodyguard who frames Jack for stealing Rose’s Heart of the Ocean necklace.
Before Titanic, Warner had a prominent career in theater, film, television, as well as with voiceover work. A lot of his fame resulted from his appearances as various characters in the Star Trek TV and film franchise. Most recently, he played guest roles in the TV shows The Amazing World of Gumball and Ripper Street.
13. Bernard Hill as Captain Edward J. Smith
Perhaps the most freaky thing about the movie Titanic is that actors Bernard Hill bears a striking resemblance to the real Captain Edward J. Smith of the RMS Titanic. After Titanic, Bernard Hill starred in The Scorpion King (2002) as Philos, but another role really put him on the map.
The role which gained the actor worldwide recognition was that of King Théoden in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Director Peter Jackson even considered Hill for the role of Gandalf. His latest projects have been in TV mini-series, with his most recent in Wolf Hall, the 2015 BBC adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s novels.
14. Jonathan Hyde as J. Bruce Ismay
Based on another real historical figure, actor Jonathan Hyde plays the chairman and managing director of the White Star Line’s RMS Titanic J. Bruce Ismay, who supposedly told Captain Smith to speed up the ship to surprise everyone with an earlier arrival in New York.
Hyde is also famous for his roles in the films Richie Rich (1994), Jumanji (1995), and Anaconda (1997). Jonathan Hyde is a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and landed many roles in other film and TV series. He has starred in the horror drama series The Strain as Eldritch Palmer since 2014.
15. Eric Braeden as John Jacob Astor IV
Eric Braeden’s character is based on the American businessman, investor, and writer John Jacob Astor IV who died in the sinking of the Titanic. He was the richest man on the ship, which Rose informs Jack when he joins for dinner in first-class. Braeden said acting in the drowning scene “was one of the scariest moments in this business for [him].”
The German and American actor began acting in the ’60s and has since accumulated many film and TV credits during his career, appearing in 120 roles. He is renowned for his role as Victor Newman on the soap opera The Young and the Restless, a role he has been playing since 1980.
16. Ewan Stewart as First Officer William Murdoch
First Officer William Murdoch takes charge of the bridge in the film during the night the Titanic hits the iceberg. He is also the officer who shoots one of the characters and another passenger when panic strikes before taking his own life. This scene upset Ewan Stewart’s nephew Scott as he felt it damaged Murdoch’s heroism, so much so, that James Cameron apologized on the DVD commentary explaining the reason and espousing the characters’ courage besides that particular scene.
While Stewart is most famous for his role in Titanic, the actor starred in the 2008 film Ecstasy and was even considered as one of the many possible actors when the James Bond role stood vacant in 2005.
17. Michael Ensign as Benjamin Guggenheim
Michael Ensign starred as the mining magnate Benjamin Guggenheim who shows off his mistress Madame Aubert to the other passengers despite being married with three daughters, who wait at home for him. Guggenheim is last seen going down with the ship declaring he is prepared to go down as a gentleman.
Also a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, Ensign appeared in many stage productions as well as films and TV shows. His most recent roles were in Solaris (2002) and Seabiscuit (2003). His TV appearance repertoire includes The A-Team, Boston Legal, Alias, Star Trek: Enterprise, The X Files, Friends, and M*A*S*H, among others.
18. Martin Jarvis as Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon
Quite a bit of controversy surrounded the Scottish baronet Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon, played by actor Martin Jarvis, after the sinking of the Titanic. He was suspected to have bribed Officer William Murdoch to get onto Lifeboat 1 with his wife and secretary. While the British Board of Trade’s inquiry never found him guilty, they did say the lifeboat should have returned to save more passengers.
While English actor Martin Jarvis played this controversial figure in the film, he is most famous for his voice acting for radio, audio books, and video games. He performed the voiceovers for the 2010 BBC series Just William and is the narrator for the audiobook version of The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde. Some of Jarvis’s video game credits include Spyro the Dragon, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and Alfred Pennyworth in Batman: Arkham.
19. Rosalind Ayres as Lady Duff-Gordon
Lo and behold, actress Rosalind Ayres didn’t only play Martin Jarvis’s wife in Titanic as Lady Duff-Gordon, the actors have been married in real life since November 23, 1974. They met on a production of Hamlet, where Ayres played Ophelia. In Titanic, Ayres played Lady Duff-Gordon, a famous fashion designer, who never lived down the rumors of her and her husband’s behavior on Lifeboat 1 which allegedly resulted in the boat never returning to rescue other passengers.
Ayres acted as Gran in the BBC sitcom Outnumbered in two episodes in 2010 and returned as the same character the following year for another episode. In addition to her film and television work, Ayres performed voiceover work as Katherine Marlowe in the video game Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception.
20. Lewis Abernathy as Lewis Bodine
Lewis Bodine, known as the geek of the team, is Brock Lovett’s best friend and crew mate on the Keldysh research ship in search of the Heart of the Ocean necklace. Actor Lewis Abernathy who played the role is one of James Cameron’s friends. Cameron modeled the role of Bodine after Abernathy and cast him after he couldn’t find another actor.
Abernathy wrote the script for the science fiction film Deep Star Six (1989) and Terminal Invasion (2002). He went on to star in Cameron’s documentaries Expedition Bismarck in 2002 and The Ghosts of Titanic in 2003.
21. Jonathan Evans-Jones as Wallace Hartley
One fact about the sinking of Titanic that James Cameron accurately portrays in his film is how the band never stopped playing on the boat deck until the moment the ship totally submerged the water, leading to all their deaths. Jonathan Evans-Jones, a real-life musician and actor, plays the brave bandmaster and violinist Wallace Hartley.
Titanic raised the Welsh actor and violinist’s profile and set the platform for other musical projects and solo work. He went on to play for the critically acclaimed chamber trio Harfenspiel. He is also known for his work playing on the soundtracks for over 25 films, many of them animated, such as the Shrek series, Madagascar (2005), and Maleficent (2014). Fun fact: Evan-Jones never met Leonardo DiCaprio on set, but one night Leo burst into his dressing room thinking it was empty. When he found Evan-Jones sleeping, DiCaprio apologized profusely.
22. Bernard Fox as Colonel Archibald Gracie IV
The Bewitched star Bernard Fox played Colonel Archibald Gracie IV in the film Titanic. He tells Cal that “women and machinery don’t mix” and congratulated Jack for saving Rose, unaware that she had attempted to throw herself overboard.
The iconic film and TV actor began his career at just 18 months old, and by 14 he was a theater assistant manager. After his role in Titanic, Fox played Captain Winston Havlock in The Mummy (1999) and gave his final performance in Surge of Power: The Stuff of Heroes in 2004 before he retired. Fox passed away on December 14, 2016 at the age of 89.
23. Jenette Goldstein as Irish Immigrant Mother
One of the most touching scenes in Titanic is when the Irish immigrant mother, played by Jenette Goldstein, tells a story to her kids during the sinking of the ship. She knows they have no chance of surviving as third-class passengers, so she decides to lay them to rest peacefully with good thoughts before they close their eyes.
Goldstein was already known for here award-winning performance in the 1986 science fiction film Aliens, also directed by James Cameron. Goldstein also starred in Cameron’s film Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) and played the USS Enterprise ship science officer in Star Trek Generations (1994). After Titanic, the actress opened a specialty store called Jenette Bras, established for women with larger cup sizes. Her shop is best known for its catchphrase “The alphabet starts at ‘D’.”
24. Scott G. Anderson as Frederick Fleet
Unfortunately for lookout Frederick Fleet, he spotted the iceberg too late. Actor Scott G. Anderson was chosen to play Fleet and yells the famous line in the movie “Iceberg right ahead!” which sets off the film’s ensuing drama.
The British actor appeared in the horror film Vacancy (2007) in which he plays the killer and Tommy King in the biographical crime drama Black Mass (2015). He also starred in the drama series Sons of Anarchy from 2013-2014.
25. Ioan Gruffudd as Fifth Officer Harold Lowe
Fifth Officer Harold Lowe was the only officer to return with his lifeboat to rescue more survivors after the sinking of the RMS Titanic ocean liner in the icy waters of the North Atlantic Ocean. The film pays testament to that by showing Ioan Gruffudd rescuing Rose.
Gruffudd caught filmmakers’ attention with his role in Titanic and the Welsh actor landed more roles in movies and TV shows. He played the main character Horatio Hornblower in Hornblower (1998-2003) and Pip in the BBC TV production of Great Expectations. His other film roles include 102 Dalmatians (2000), Black Hawk Down (2001) as Lt. John Beales, and King Arthur (2004). His most recent role was in the 2017 miniseries Liar, playing Dr. Andrew Earlham.
26. Jonathan Phillips as Second Officer Charles Lightoller
In the film Titanic, Charles Lightoller, played by actor Jonathan Phillips, is seen telling Captain Smith that it’s hard to spot icebergs without breaking the water. The real-life Lightoller, a decorated Royal Navy officer, was the most senior officer to survive the sinking in 1912.
While Phillips’s celebrated role in his career was playing Lightoller, he also appeared in one episode of the British TV detective drama show Midsomer Murders. His latest role was in another British detective drama called Inspector Lewis as the neurosurgeon Alistair Stoke.
27. Craig Kelly as Harold Sydney Bride
Craig Kelly, actor and voice-over artist, starred in the blockbuster film as a junior wireless radio operator on the Titanic. Also based on a historical figure onboard the ocean liner, Harold Sydney Bride was rescued by the Carpathia after he scrambled onto lifeboat Collapsible ‘B.’
Kelly landed a minor role in the Spice Girls film Spiceworld (1997) in which he briefly speaks to Ginger Spice (Geri) and played a small role in Wing Commander, a 1999 sci-fi film. He has starred in several TV shows, his most notable as Vince Tyler in the TV series Queer as Folk and Luke Strong in the soap opera Coronation Street. Most prolific in his career is his voice-over work, with his most recent in a Nutella ad in 2014.
28. Simon Crane as Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall
James Cameron based a lot of his characters on real people and Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall is another one of them. Simon Crane played the Fourth Officer who operates Lifeboat 2 during the sinking and is in charge of firing flares.
Besides for his acting abilities, Crane is known as a stuntman, stunt director, and film director. He coordinated stunts for Titanic as well as Saving Private Ryan (1998), The World Is Not Enough (1999), Hancock (2008), Men in Black 3 (2012), Salt (2010), and Jason Bourne (2016). Crane also directed the film adaptation of the popular video game Kane & Lynch: Dead Men (2013).
29. Paul Brightwell as Robert Hichens
The English director and actor Paul Brightwell played the Quartermaster of the ship Robert Hichens. James Cameron based this character on one of the six quartermasters of the ocean liner who refused to go back to rescue survivors after the sinking of the ship.
Brightwell has starred in several plays, movies, and TV shows. He guest starred in the British police series The Bill and appeared as a recurring role as DS Hall in The Commander. Some of his other accolades include Malchus in the 2013 miniseries The Bible and as Mr. Hickfang in the movie The Voices (2014).
30. Nicholas Cascone as Bobby Buell
Nicholas Cascone appeared in Titanic as part of Brock Lovett’s search crew on the Keldysh ship. Cascone had a minor role in the movie, only acting in a few scenes when he showed Lovett the picture of Rose they found under the ocean, and when he called Lovett to tell him someone had claimed to be the woman in the drawing.
Besides for his role in Titanic, Cascone is known for his small role in the fantasy film Dragonfly (2002). Here’s a fun fact for you: Buell and Abernathy watch in shock as Rose throws the Heart of the Ocean overboard in the alternate ending of Titanic.
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