Titanic lives on in the hearts and minds of millions. The third highest-grossing film of all time has left an indelible mark on popular culture, but what has it done to its performer’s wallets? Reece Thompson had a small but memorable role in the blockbuster, and he’s still getting paid to this day.
Little Irish Boy
The last hour of Titanic is a blur. As the ship sinks into the water, viewers are bombarded with spots of tragedy. One such moment comes in the lower decks. An Irish mother reads her children a bedtime story, knowing full well that the ship is sinking and they will perish. Alongside the elderly couple choosing to stay aboard, this moment packs a wallop.
One of those children was Thompson. He recently spoke to Business Insider about his experience. A child model at five years old, his agent told his mother about two projects: a major motion picture, and a gas station commercial. Lucky for Thompson, his mother chose the former.
“My mom was like: ‘Let’s just do it. It’ll be cool. Even if the movie sucks, we’ll see it.’ Obviously, it ended up exploding, so that wasn’t a bad decision on her part, that’s for sure,’ Thompson says. His memories are fuzzy, save for struggling with his Irish accent. He says, “It just sounds soft-spoken. I remember trying to mimic what the speech coach was trying to do. That’s as close as I got.”
How Much Did He Make?
Part of Titanic’s legacy is how much money it made. It earned $28.6 million in its opening weekend en route to the ludicrous sum of $2.18 billion. Thompson ended up earning about $30,000 for his role. The money was invested and saved, and would later come in handy for education and living expenses.
The Money Hasn’t Ceased
The money didn’t stop in 1997, however. Every three months Thompson still gets a check. When the film hit VHS, he says the checks were in the “low thousands.” There were spikes with subsequent releases on various media formats and for occasional theater releases as well.
It’s All Gravy
Reece Thompson’s moved on, but the cash still comes in. “It’s weird because it’s not present in my mind anymore,” he said. “It’s not like, ‘Oh, when am I going to get a new Titanic check?’ When it happens, it’s like, ‘Oh, cool, an extra $100.” He hopes the film continues to stay in the zeitgeist “because that means more money for me.”