Kate Winslet, through several notable cinematic triumphs, as well as one heartwarming feature on Riky Gervais’ Extras, has become a national treasure for those in the UK. The actor is not only gifted within her field, but has shown an endearing humility that has allowed her to connect with her audience beyond the silver screen. However, it was there that the population first fell in love with Kate Winslet.
In particular, we all feel for her at the same time as Leonard DiCaprio’s Jack, as she starred opposite the talented actor in the 1997 mega-hit Titanic. Directed by James Cameron, the movie became a behemoth at the box office and curated a cultural shift that few could have expected. The production bagged 14 nominations at the Academy Awards that year and secured 11 prizes.
The film was released as a spectacular event and delivered on its premise, providing a jaw-dropping cinematic experience and a love story that has resonated throughout pop culture ever since its release. It has provided countless talking points, namely how large a door must be to support two people. But its biggest triumph is launching the career of the previously unknown Kate Winslet.
That doesn’t mean, however, that all the parties within the production would jump at the chance to work together again. Winslet and her co-star DiCaprio have remained best of friends since the filming of Titanic, with the latter even walking the former down the aisle at her wedding, endorsing their cherished friendship even further. However, Winslet does not feel the same about the director James Cameron.
Winslet previously reflected on the experience of working on Titanic as an extremely traumatic one, citing Cameron as one of the main reasons for that trauma. However, the actor almost begged Cameron to give her the role: “He was on the freeway, and he said, ‘I’m going somewhere,’” Winslet told Rolling Stone. “And I think he pulled over, and I said, ‘I just have to do this, and you are really mad if you don’t cast me.’”
Her job wasn’t over then, either. With her name now on the script, she set about convincing DiCaprio to take on the role of Jack Dawson. DiCaprio was hesitant to typecast himself as a romantic lead, having just finished shooting on Baz luhrman’s Romeo + Juliet. “I was thinking, ‘I’m going to persuade him to do this because I’m not doing it without him, and that’s all there is to it,’” Winslet explained. “‘I will have him.’ Because he is f*cking brilliant. He’s a f*cking genius, and that was absolutely why.”
However, once time had passed and the production had finished, Winslet’s attitude toward the behemoth hit mellowed. Having endured a tumultuous time on set, which included Cameron regularly referring to her as Kate Weighs-a-lot, things turned sour. “Since finishing Titanic, I’ve turned down seven offers,” she said. “I don’t want to work at the moment, which is a new feeling and a nice feeling… I want to buy some wheels, visit the dentist, do some ordinary stuff.”Winslet confirmed it would take a huge cheque to make her work with the director ever again: “He has a temper like you wouldn’t believe,” she told The Guardian. “You’d have to pay me a lot of money to work with Jim again.