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Titanic (1943) More at IMDbPro »

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Titanic -- In April, 1943, the film was banned by the Berlin censors for German release because of its terrifying scenes of panic, all too familiar to German civilians undergoing nightly Allied bombing raids.


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Release Date:
12 December 1943 (Finland) See more »
The story of the sinking of the British luxury liner Titanic in 1912. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
A film that should be seen before it's judged. See more (38 total) »


  (in credits order)

Sybille Schmitz ... Sigrid Olinsky
Hans Nielsen ... 1st Officer Petersen
Kirsten Heiberg ... Gloria
Ernst Fritz Fürbringer ... Sir Bruce Ismay (as E.F. Fürbringer)
Karl Schönböck ... John Jacob Astor
Charlotte Thiele ... Lady Astor

Otto Wernicke ... Captain Edward J. Smith
Franz Schafheitlin ... Hunderson
Sepp Rist ... Jan
Claude Farell ... Manniküre Hedi (as Monika Burg)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jolly Bohnert ... Marcia (uncredited)
Hermann Brix ... Kapellmeister Gruber (uncredited)
Fritz Böttger ... Lord Douglas (uncredited)
Karl Dannemann ... 1. Funker Philipps (uncredited)
Kurt Alexander Duma ... 2. Ingenieur Hesketh (uncredited)
Peter Elsholtz ... Landarbeiter Bobby (uncredited)
Karl Fochler ... Obersteward (uncredited)
Fritz Genschow ... Landarbeiter Henry (uncredited)
Herbert Gernot ... Schiffsdetektiv (uncredited)
Susi Jera ... Kind (uncredited)
Josef Kamper ... 1. Ingenieur Romain (uncredited)
Lieselott Klingler ... Anne (uncredited)
W.P. Krüger ... (uncredited)

Hans Leibelt ... (uncredited)
Theodor Loos ... Geheimrat Bergmann (uncredited)
Karl Meixner ... Lord Astors 1. Sekretär Hopkins (uncredited)
Edgar Pauly ... (uncredited)
Werner Scharf ... Südländer Mendoz (uncredited)
Just Scheu ... Dr. Lorenzen (uncredited)
Georg H. Schnell ... Aktionär Morrison (uncredited)
Hans Schwarz Jr. ... Athletischer Kerl (uncredited)
Theo Shall ... 1st Officer Murdoch (uncredited)
Ernst Stahl-Nachbaur ... Oberrichter (uncredited)
Walter Steinbeck ... Aktionär Fränklin (uncredited)
Walter Steinweg ... Bootsmann (uncredited)
Erich Stelmecke ... (uncredited)
Herbert Tiede ... 2nd Officer Lightoller (uncredited)
Charlotte Tiedemann ... Frau mit Kind (uncredited)
Toni von Bukovics ... Herzogin (uncredited)
Peter Voß ... Schiffsarzt (uncredited)
Heinz Welzel ... 2. Funker Bride (uncredited)

Directed by
Herbert Selpin 
Werner Klingler (uncredited)
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Harald Bratt  story (uncredited)
Hansi Köck  script (uncredited)
Herbert Selpin  writer
Walter Zerlett-Olfenius 

Original Music by
Werner Eisbrenner 
Cinematography by
Friedl Behn-Grund 
Film Editing by
Friedel Buckow 
Production Design by
Robert A. Dietrich 
August Herrmann 
Fritz Lück 
Fritz Maurischat 
Set Decoration by
Robert A. Dietrich (uncredited)
August Herrmann (uncredited)
Fritz Lück (uncredited)
Costume Design by
Max von Formacher (uncredited)
Production Management
Willy Reiber .... production manager
Fritz Schwarz .... unit manager
Sound Department
Adolf Jansen .... sound (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Ernst Kunstmann .... visual effects (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Karl Ewald .... still photographer (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
85 min | Germany:80 min (censored version)
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono | Mono (Tobis-Klangfilm)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The film endured many production difficulties, including a clash of egos, massive creative differences and general war-time frustrations.See more »
Factual errors: In the film when the lookout sees the iceberg he says "Ice! Ice to starboard" but the lookouts used a phone to tell about the iceberg not by talking.See more »
Sir Bruce Ismay:The White Star Line has no need of officiers who sow only unrest among the passangers.
1st Officer Petersen:And I have no need to serve on a ship that run not by sailors but by stock speculators.
Sir Bruce Ismay:I forbit you to use that tone. Go in your stateroom. I'm relieving you of your duty.
1st Officer Petersen:On board this ship you can neither relieve me of duty nor give me orders. To me you are nothing more than a passanger.
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God Save The QueenSee more »


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33 out of 43 people found the following review useful.
A film that should be seen before it's judged., 8 May 2002
Author: ( from Terre Haute, Indiana

Too many just dismiss this film outright as Nazi propaganda, and don't examine the film as a film. Certainly when compared to the 1953 Hollywood TITANIC it's a far better made and less sappy piece of drama. And if it has a lot to be desired as history -- well then so did the Hollywood film. The performances, direction, and special effects are all excellent for the time. In fact, it's very surprising that the German film industry was able to mount such a first class production as this in the midst of the war.

Which brings me around to the propaganda aspect of the film: to my mind it's been very much over stated in accounts on the film that I've read. Apparently, the most vicious part of the film's propaganda content, a trial scene and end title which condemned Britain as a country driven by greed, have been omitted from all current prints. Still, were it the "Hate the British" film it's often dismissed as, it's truly amazing to see the propaganda aspects in the film that are missed. The Third Class are never shown being locked below decks as the ship sinks (indeed, when the ship's engines stop, they march up to First Class to demand an explanation from the Captain), and the crew and officers to a man are shown being skilled, efficient, and brave. How could the Nazi's miss so many easy targets, and ones that have been included in almost every Titanic film to this day? And while it is true that Bruce Ismay is turned into a first class villain, driving his ship without regard for safety straight into the iceberg -- it's also been that way in every other Titanic film in which he's been portrayed (for example, the recent TV mini-series TITANIC -- which shows Ismay down in the boiler room screaming at the stokers to make the ship go faster -- like that really happened!). It's all just a question of degree. And if the film portrays the rich millionaires like John Jacob Astor as people who will use money, class, and power to achieve anything -- well, it's no worse than some of the stories -- printed amid all the bravery and self-sacrifice slop -- that appeared in 1912 newspapers. Remember, after the disaster Ismay and the White Star Line were acquitted, people were led to believe all the First Class men died bravely, Captain Smith was blamed for everything, and the poor souls who lost everything when the ship went down never got a penny in restitution. Thus, in the end, considering all the un-truths and legends that have sprung up around the Titanic story, I believe this film plays a lot less like a Nazi film and more like an anti-capitalist one. Little wonder it played in East Germany after the war with no problem. There's certainly enough "Hate the Rich" sentiment here to have warmed Stalin's heart.

So, to me anyway, it's almost refreshing to see a Titanic film that treats the whole affair as the monument to stupidity that it was. Since it has nothing to do with history, one must examine it as the first example of film makers trying to come to grips with the "Titanic Legend". (One could also award that place to the 1929 British film ATLANTIC -- but for some unknown reason that film tried to pretend it was fiction.) Looked at from that prospective, it's a fascinating piece of film making (and history) that deserves to be seen without the vicious "Nazi film" tag hanging over it. Certainly James Cameron must have seen a lot to admire in it; why else would he have copied shots and plot ideas un-masse. (He also coped shots and dialogue from every other Titanic film ever made.) Thankfully, he didn't copy the film's greatest (abet fictional) moment: wireless operator Phillips releasing his pet canary into the night as "Nearer My God to Thee" plays in the background. Did director Herbert Selpin crib this bit from von Stroheim's GREED? We'll never know, as it's said he was murdered by the Nazi's before the film was completed. So much for the benefits of creating a "Nazi film".

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