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James Cameron updates starry night sky in 'Titanic' thanks to Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson

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James Cameron updated the star field in a shot for Titanic to accurately reflect the sky at the urging of Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson.


James Cameron has mostly been in the news lately for his solo voyage to the ocean's deepest point, but he also has a small film hitting theaters tomorrow — Titanic is back, with the full 3D treatment. Unlike George Lucas, who just can't leave his classic Star Wars films alone, Cameron made only one change: the stars in the picture during one particular shot near the end of the film after the ship went down were replaced to accurately reflect what exactly was in the night sky at that time and date.

While this isn't a major change that most moviegoers will notice (or even care about), there's a good story behind how it came to pass. It turns out Cameron made this change a few years ago, when releasing the 10th anniversary edition of the film — and the change was prompted by famed astrophysicist (and recent On The Verge guest) Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson. Dr. Tyson reportedly emailed Cameron, chiding him for getting the shot wrong and saying he should have known better. Cameron responded by asking for the proper stars for the exact time of April 15th, 1912 at 4:20am in the morning, updated the shot, and called it a day. Score one for the movie perfectionists — now, as Kate Winslet waits on a piece of driftwood for her rescue, you can rest assured knowing the night sky is accurate.