Titanic: Kate Winslet and James Cameron at 3D premiere

Kate Winslet: "People ask me about Titanic all the time... it's like part of my DNA"

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Oscar-winner Kate Winslet and director James Cameron have been in London for the red carpet premiere of a new, 3D version of Titanic.

Winslet shot to worldwide fame after starring in the original 1997 film alongside Leonardo DiCaprio.

She told the BBC the global hit was "massively important" to her career, giving her "creative freedom".

However, she added, the thought of seeing her performance transformed into 3D was "terrifying".

Director James Cameron said the new version of Titanic would allow fans to "revisit" the box-office blockbuster.

"The big thrill of it isn't just the 3D," he said, "it's bringing it back to the big screen, where it has a lot more emotional impact."

The director added he had been "plucked off my expedition ship" for the premiere at the Royal Albert Hall, following his recent deep ocean descent off the Pacific island of Guam.

Anniversary year

Titanic, which took two years to film, saw Winslet play upper class socialite Rose DeWitt Bukater opposite DiCaprio's third class passenger Jack Dawson.

She said the film had "never left her".

"People have been saying to me all day, 'How does it feel to be revisiting it after all this time?'," she said. "But people ask me about Titanic all the time, so it isn't like I'm revisiting it at all. It's part of my DNA."

Until the release of Avatar in 2009 - also directed by Cameron - Titanic was the most successful movie ever, with global takings of $1.843bn (£1.14bn).

Director James Cameron: "It's all a bit surreal"

Avatar went on to make $2.77 billion (£1.76 billion).

Speaking of the 3D conversion, Cameron said: "More than ever, you feel you're right there going through all the jeopardy that Jack and Rose go through.

"The 3D kicks the whole experience up to another level."

He added he would consider 3D versions of his other movies, including the first two Terminator films, if they were considered economically viable.

Winslet won the best actress Oscar for The Reader in 2009, while Titanic picked up 11 Oscars at the 1998 Academy Awards.

The film is being re-released 100 years after the titular ship set sail.

Shortly before midnight on 14 April 1912, the passenger liner struck an iceberg on its way from Southampton to New York.

It sank less than three hours later, killing 1,517 people.

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