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Titanic celebrates the 20th anniversary of its release next month, and to mark the occasion, its director, James Cameron, has weighed in on one of the movie’s most contentious fan theories: that Rose could have moved over so Jack could get on to that floating door with her, and thus he'd have survived. Why didn't she do it?
“The answer is very simple, because it says on page 147 [of the script] that Jack dies. Very simple," Cameron tells Vanity Fair."Obviously, it was an artistic choice, the thing was just big enough to hold her, and not big enough to hold him. I think it’s all kind of silly, really, that we’re having this discussion 20 years later.”
The director went on to say that “the film is about death and separation; he had to die… things happen for artistic reasons, not physics reasons.”
Past: Medieval theologians pondered how many angels could fit/dance on the head of a pin. Today: ppl w/ too much time on their hands discuss if Jack could fit on that door alongside Rose. #Titanic pic.twitter.com/O2fJwY4D25— Sotiris Gravas (@22_ring) November 11, 2017
Past: Medieval theologians pondered how many angels could fit/dance on the head of a pin. Today: ppl w/ too much time on their hands discuss if Jack could fit on that door alongside Rose. #Titanic pic.twitter.com/O2fJwY4D25
So there you have it – Jack died because of art, and not because of Rose’s refusal to shift on over.
This isn't the only theory posed by Titanic fans over the years. One of the more bizarre ones is that Jack is a time-traveller, sent back to 1912 in order to prevent Rose from taking her own life.
The theory goes that if Rose had died or gone missing, the ship would have stopped and never hit the iceberg, changing history forever.
Jack from the Titanic movie was a time traveller. Mind... blown! #titanicmovie #leodicaprio #titanicconspiracy pic.twitter.com/T6W0SMbcs0— Another UK Voice (@AnotherUKVoice) October 30, 2013
Jack from the Titanic movie was a time traveller. Mind... blown! #titanicmovie #leodicaprio #titanicconspiracy pic.twitter.com/T6W0SMbcs0
Titanic is a prime example of how some movie fans don't merely watch a movie - they obsess over the tiny details of a film, spotting things others would barely notice.
There's no shortage of similar fan theories about movies, put forward by people who claim to have worked out the real meaning behind a story or its characters (no matter how unlikely or bizarre it might seem).
With that in mind, here are seven other movie classics that have inspired some of the most thought-provoking, brilliant and just plain bonkers fan theories ever.
Finding Nemo (2003)
One Twitter recently user noticed something in the opening scene of the 2003 animated hit.
At the beginning of "Finding Nemo" the slight crack on Nemo's fish egg helps explain his 'lucky fin'. pic.twitter.com/edxAXW4N6O— Movie Details (@moviedetail) September 1, 2017
At the beginning of "Finding Nemo" the slight crack on Nemo's fish egg helps explain his 'lucky fin'. pic.twitter.com/edxAXW4N6O
It shows an image of Nemo's fish egg with a hairline crack in the shell. This, could explain the origins of Nemo's tiny "lucky fin".
It's a cute little detail that probably bypassed most viewers. That's why we need the eagle-eyed fans!
Harry Potter (2001-2011):
Naturally, Potter has produced a whole realm of fan theories, at least one of which has been endorsed by J.K. Rowling herself.
Dumbledore as death. It's a beautiful theory and it fits. https://t.co/QqTQm2QnI0— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) August 21, 2015
Dumbledore as death. It's a beautiful theory and it fits. https://t.co/QqTQm2QnI0
One of the most haunting Potter theories is that everything in the series took place in Harry's imagination; that he lost his mind while living in the cupboard under the stairs at the Dursley's, and conjured up the whole Hogwarts adventure as a coping mechanism.
Harry Potter dreamt up all of the wizarding world in his cupboard, huh? We've got some reverse fan theories for you: https://t.co/JF05CySQ7O pic.twitter.com/yK2isTsyzO— Tor.com (@tordotcom) August 19, 2017
Harry Potter dreamt up all of the wizarding world in his cupboard, huh? We've got some reverse fan theories for you: https://t.co/JF05CySQ7O pic.twitter.com/yK2isTsyzO
Rowling has acknowledged that theory, without outright dismissing it. (Along similar lines, you could make yourself feel even worse by reading this monumentally grim fan theory about the TV series, Friends.)
Jurassic World (2015):
One theory has it that Chris Pratt's character, Owen Grady, is the grown-up version of a child character from the original 1993 Jurassic Park movie - namely the young kid at the start of the movie who gets a memorably graphic lecture on raptors' killing strategies from Dr Alan Grant (Sam Neill).
The logic is that the kid character would roughly be the same age in 2015 as Pratt's in Jurassic World, and that Alan Grant had made such an impression on him that he devoted his life to treating raptors with love and respect.
For the record, the actor who played that young kid, Whit Hertford, thinks the theory is bogus.
for the record, @prattprattpratt is not playing a grown up version of my character in @JurrasicWorld. that role is mine, dammit!— Whit Hertford (@whithertford) June 11, 2015
for the record, @prattprattpratt is not playing a grown up version of my character in @JurrasicWorld. that role is mine, dammit!
Home Alone (1990):
What if the burglars, Harry and Marv (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern), are not the real villains of the 1990 Christmas classic, after all? And the real bad guy orchestrating the crime is actually Kevin's Uncle Frank?
Extremely underrated movie character: Uncle Frank from Home Alone. Dude is a savage & I love him. pic.twitter.com/QhUKRbAfN5— Jordan Strack (@JordanStrack) July 10, 2017
Extremely underrated movie character: Uncle Frank from Home Alone. Dude is a savage & I love him. pic.twitter.com/QhUKRbAfN5
That's what one theorist believes. The explanation goes that cheapskate Frank plotted everything from Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) getting sent to the attic and missing the ride to the airport, to cutting the electricity and knocking out the alarm clocks, to arranging for the bumbling burglars to murder Kevin!
Why would he do this, you may wonder? Primarily to cash in on his brother's wealth by having him robbed. But when Frank learns that Kevin has been left at home, the theory goes - and a quick screen grab apparently hints- that Frank called Harry and Marv and instructed them to do away with Kevin because he knew too much.
Bonus criminal Home Alone fan theory: Kevin's dad, Peter (played by the late John Heard), is actually in the Mafia, which would explain the family's mysterious immense wealth and some of the characters' strange, bullying behaviour.
More on John Heard - here's a great Reddit post hypothesizing that Peter McAllister was in the mob.https://t.co/PLqJJxjTcz pic.twitter.com/FaBEapybmb— Jack M Silverstein (@readjack) July 22, 2017
More on John Heard - here's a great Reddit post hypothesizing that Peter McAllister was in the mob.https://t.co/PLqJJxjTcz pic.twitter.com/FaBEapybmb
This is really out there. One theory put forward by writer Mary Katharine Ham claims that the 2010 Disney kiddies' animation is inspired by the horror classic The Shining.
Parallels between @disney ‘s #Frozen and #horror classic #TheShining? https://t.co/Tu20W1vhgJ by @MkHammer pic.twitter.com/pB5hfuhpK9— Final Draft (@finaldraftinc) July 1, 2016
Parallels between @disney ‘s #Frozen and #horror classic #TheShining? https://t.co/Tu20W1vhgJ by @MkHammer pic.twitter.com/pB5hfuhpK9
The evidence is compelling. For example, take the comparison between Frozen's Elsa, and The Shining's Jack Torrence. Both films have "a menacing main character who is a danger to family members, whose volatility increases after a long isolation inside a giant, ornate, high-ceilinged building in a cold, desolate landscape."
Meanwhile, Elsa's sister Anna is compared to little Danny in The Shining ("the innocent protagonist touched by the supernatural"), while snowman Olaf is seen as a newer version of the wife Wendy (Shelley Duvall) from the earlier horror movie (the "goofy supporting character...who will sacrifice anything to protect our innocent protagonist from danger").
Toy Story (1995-2010):
The three Toy Story movies ( soon to be four) have inspired many fan theories over the years. Some are really sad - such as one thesis that Andy's dad (also called Andy) was the original owner of Woody, but died when little Andy was a child.
Even having one of the trilogy's writers rubbishing that theory hasn't killed off speculation.
Complete and utter fake news. Everyone go back to your homes. Nothing to see here, folks. #Iwasthere https://t.co/06j37YKKt2— andrew stanton (@andrewstanton) June 24, 2017
Complete and utter fake news. Everyone go back to your homes. Nothing to see here, folks. #Iwasthere https://t.co/06j37YKKt2
Then there's a hypothesis that Sid, the demonic kid from the first movie, appears as a grown up bin man in the third instalment.
Sid from Toy Story was the garbage man in Toy Story 3 pic.twitter.com/Nw5AARme1w— Childhood Shows (@ChildhoodShows) September 3, 2017
Sid from Toy Story was the garbage man in Toy Story 3 pic.twitter.com/Nw5AARme1w
Another theory which won't go to bed is that Andy's mum was the original owner of Jessie the cowgirl, first introduced in Toy Story 2. That would make Andy's mum 'Emily', about whom Jessie sings the heartbreaking ballad 'When She Loved Me'.
Even Tom Hanks, who voices Woody, is a fan of that one.
One last Toy Story-related theory: that all Pixar movies take place in the same cinematic universe - the Pixar universe- something that Disney (which owns Pixar) seemed to confirm last year.
The long-running 007 franchise has generated loads of wacky and wonderful fan theories, ranging from a grisly guess as to why Bond never fathered a child with any of his romantic conquests, to a theory that Bond is merely a flashy distraction to cover the work of real MI6 agents.
One of the most persistent fan theories is that Bond is a Time Lord, which is why he has been played by multiple actors over the decades.
New Theory: James Bond is a Lost Time Lord that keeps randomly dying off screen and regenerating. pic.twitter.com/hQi1wcCdSH— Victoria Wolfe (@NyxbornWolf) March 27, 2017
New Theory: James Bond is a Lost Time Lord that keeps randomly dying off screen and regenerating. pic.twitter.com/hQi1wcCdSH
Or, as a fiercely disputed argument posits, is 'James Bond' just a code name assigned to different agents?
The most recent Bond theory has it that Bond experienced brain damage during the head-drilling sequence in Spectre (2015) - and, as a result, Daniel Craig's Bond hallucinated every other Bond adventure starring other actors in the role.
If that were true, it would be one of the biggest childhood-memory-scarring revelations since...well, yesterday, when we learned that Mario is no longer a plumber.
We need a lie down after all that.
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