Titanic Floats on Video

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Check out this article. If you thought the movie was cut by Cameron because it was too long, others may "operate" additional cuts...for different reasons.

Wednesday, September 2, 1998 8:44 AM For some of you out thereand you know who you arethe thought of Celine Dion's heart going on or Leonardo DiCaprio's lips turning blue is enough to make you long for more coverage of the presidential scandal. But it turns out you're in the minority. Titanic, that ubiquitous epic romance in which Kate Winslet pines for a man she knew for less than a week aboard the doomed ocean liner, is sailing off of video store shelves at a record pace. And the film is well on its way to becoming the best-selling home video of all time. 20 million copies of James "King of the World" Cameron's big-boat flick, which recently became the first movie to pass the $600 million mark at the domestic box office, went on sale at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday. Fans camped out at retail outlets to grab their very own copies, which are listed for $25 but discounted at most stores. If the Oscar-winning film, which is still playing in more than 500 theaters across the United States and Canada, maintains its momentum, it's expected to surpass The Lion King, currently the best-selling vid ever. The animated Disney flick has sold around 30 million copies; Jurassic Park holds the record for a live action film, moving 17 million copies. Retail giants such as Blockbuster and Musicland weren't the only ones benefiting from Titanic fever. Online video seller Reel.com, which is offering the flick for the bargain price of $9.99 until the end of September, had reportedly received more than 220,000 presale orders as of Tuesday. Of course, some fans may be a little overzealous in their quest to return to Titanic. Reuters reports that a San Francisco man was hospitalized on Tuesday after he was thrown to the ground, punched, and kicked in the head. His attacker then tried to make off with his brand spankin' new copy of Titanic. Police believe the two men knew each other, and the incident was sparked by more than just lust for the movie. "It looks like the Titanic video was secondary in this incident," says a police spokesman. "Thank goodness. If it was the primary cause, we'd all be in trouble." And speaking of overzealousness, a video store in American Fork, Utah, says for $5 it will turn Titanic from PG-13 to G, reports the Associated Press. How? By cutting out all those steamy scenes between Jack and Rose, of course. Sunrise Family Video says it will happily snip out the scene in which Winslet poses nude for Leo, and another in which the two lovers get it on in the back seat of a car in the ship's hold. For another $3, the store will remove any other scenes the buyer finds objectionable. More than 50 people took the store up on its offer Tuesday, says AP. "I'm thrilled," said one mother of five. "My teenage daughter is excited. She's going to invite her friends over to watch." Paramount is less than thrilled with the store's initiative. "It's not with Paramount's blessing, and it's illegal," says a studio spokeswoman, who adds that if viewers object to certain scenes, they shouldn't buy the video. No word on whether the studio will take legal action.

-- Dan Draghici (ddraghic@sprint.ca), September 03, 1998

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