Plans for a Replica of Titanic Floated in China
A company in southwestern China has announced plans to build a full-scale replica of the Titanic, the passenger ship that famously sank in 1912. The Seven Star Energy Investment Group, based in Sichuan Province, said it would spend spend 1 billion renminbi, or about $164 million, to build an ocean liner that would be moored on a river bank as a tourist attraction.
The original ill-fated ocean liner has been the subject of immense fascination in China, particularly after the release of the James Cameron’s 1997 film “Titanic,” which was the highest-grossing film in China for more than a decade.
Seven Star is a little-known private company involved in electricity generation. It grabbed headlines after it held a news conference Sunday in Hong Kong to announce plans to build the Titanic replica based on the design of a sister ship, the Olympic.
Seven Star said it planned to have the ship, which will be built at the China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation’s Wuchang shipyard, serve as the centerpiece of a theme park in Daying County, in Sichuan Province. The company said it intended to complete the park, which was first announced at a trade fair in October, by 2016.
Su Shaojun, chairman of Seven Star, told the state news agency Xinhua that the replica ship would include features that recreate the experience of hitting an iceberg. The “pinnacle of the spirit of human responsibility” was revealed as passengers tried to save one another as the ship went down, Mr. Su said.
While the Titanic is remembered in museums in the United States and Europe, he said, there is nothing comparable in China. “We chose to rebuild the Titanic in China so that this same spirit will be developed and carried on in the East,” he said.
“The boat we are building, it’s not for sailing,” Mr. Su said when asked whether the Titanic replica would be safe. “It will be a totemic symbol of the Titanic spirit, eternally berthed at the bank of the Qi River.”
The company isn’t the first to attempt a reconstruction of the ship. Last year, the Australian magnate Clive Palmer announced plans to build a Titanic II at a shipyard in the Chinese city of Nanjing. His Blue Star Line intends to launch the ship by 2016.
该公司并不是第一个试图重建“泰坦尼克号”的公司。去年，澳大利亚富豪克莱夫·帕尔默(Clive Palmer)公布了在中国南京一家造船厂建造“泰坦尼克2号”的计划。帕尔默的蓝星国际航运公司(Blue Star Line)打算让该船在2016年前下水。
James McDonald, the global marketing director for Blue Star Line, said in an interview on Monday that the company expected construction of the Titanic II to get underway later this year. “The difference with ours is that we are a working vessel that will sail all around the world,” he said.