Titanic voyage to be recreated on Sydney Harbour

Passengers row to safety aboard a lifeboat as the ill-fated ship sinks in Titanic. Photo: Merie W. Wallace
Passengers row to safety aboard a lifeboat as the ill-fated ship sinks in Titanic. Photo: Merie W. Wallace

The organisers are calling it an immersive cinema experience - but not too immersive.

With cinema operators looking for ever more innovative ways to turn movie-going into an event, one company is planning to recreate the Titanic's ill-fated maiden voyage on Sydney Harbour in November.

Beyond Cinema will take up to 1000 passengers on a sightseeing cruise boat for a screening of James Cameron's hit movie, which starred Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet???, from 1997.

After buying tickets to first-, second- or third-class decks, they will dress up as if it's 1912 and eat meals appropriate to their class, with actors on board helping simulate the experience of being on the Titanic.

"We're going to fully theme the boat itself and recreate the atmosphere of the early 1900s," the company's creative director, Aden Levin, says. "Everyone will be given instructions on what clothing to wear.

"They'll also be given different characters that they will be on the boat."

Over a five-hour cruise, the organisers plan a mix of theatre and cinema as the boat travels around the harbour.

"Rather than just screening Titanic, we thought, 'Why don't we try and recreate the actual experience of being in the movie?'" Levin says.

When the ship hits the iceberg on screen, the organisers will simulate it on the boat.

Levin guarantees nobody will actually end up in the water.

"OH&S in Australia doesn't actually allow us to actually sink the boat," he deadpans.

So what will they do for an iceberg?

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in the hit movie from 1997. Photo: Merie W. Wallace

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in the hit movie from 1997. Photo: Merie W. Wallace

"Because there's a car loading bay, we're budgeting to recreate an iceberg that's coming up through the middle of the boat," Levin says.

Beyond Cinema ran a season of movies watched from hot tubs at Sydney University over winter that was successful enough for the concept to expand to Perth and Melbourne.

Levin believes people who are bored with traditional cinema-going want new experiences so the company is creating "5-D or maybe 6-D" cinema, with the likely audience including "Millennials, Titanic fans and people who just want a fun night".

After Titanic, it plans a screening of Shawshank Redemption in a former jail.

The concept aims to tap our apparently endless desire for new experiences.

"People are always after the next different thing they can do, whether it's playing mini-golf inside a Newtown bar or going to one of our hot tub cinemas," Levin says.

This story Titanic voyage to be recreated on Sydney Harbour first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.