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Kate Winslet gets candid about life after ‘Titanic’: ‘Being famous was horrible’

The actor said she opted for small roles after the blockbuster success.
Kate Winslet
(L) Kate Winslet in Titanic in 1997. (R) Kate Winslet in 2003.Shutterstock, Getty Images

"Titanic" changed Kate Winslet's life, and always for the better. 26 years later, Winslet is opening up in more detail about the Oscar-winning movie and the fame that came with it.

Winslet, in an interview with Net-a-Porter published in February 2024, said being famous on that scale was "horrible."

"I was grateful, of course. I was in my early 20s, and I was able to get a flat. But I didn’t want to be followed literally feeding the ducks,” she said.

Before James Cameron's blockbuster, Winslet had acted in a number of film and TV roles, notably the 1995 adaptation of "Sense and Sensibility," for which she won a BAFTA award.

"Titanic" was a success of, well, titanic proportions. The movie, which premiered in 1997, was inspired by the 1912 sinking of an ocean liner of the same name. Winslet plays Rose, a 19-year-old socialite who falls for Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio), a poor and charming young man in steerage.

The movie swept the Oscars, winning 11 Academy Awards, and grossed over $1 billion.

But Winslet said she wanted to choose "small roles" after that, per Net-a-Porter, due to media scrutiny that followed "Titanic."

“I felt like I had to look a certain way, or be a certain thing, and because media intrusion was so significant at that time, my life was quite unpleasant.”

How old was Kate Winslet in Titanic?

Winslet was 22 when she starred in "titanic." Her character, Rose, was 19.

Now 48, Winslet told Net-A-Porter that young women now "know how to use their voice."

Winslet has also spoken about the changes made for women within the entertainment industry. In a 2022 interview with The Sunday Times, she commented on the younger generation of women.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in "Titanic"Everett Collection

“They have already learnt that they will be heard. Obviously not in every situation, but they know how to use their voice — especially young women. That’s striking to me. When I was younger you spoke when spoken to. That is not the case now. Young women are stronger. And they’re prouder of their bodies.”

What else has she said about fame?

Winslet, who is the youngest person to rack up six Academy Award nominations and has seven total, has spoken about her experiences with fame in the past.

In a 2022 conversation on the "Happy Sad Confused" Podcast, Winslet spoke about how her body has become a topic of discussion.

“Apparently I was too fat,” said Winslet, referring to her "Titanic" character, Rose, saving herself by floating on a piece of wood after the ship sank. “Why were they so mean to me? They were so mean. I wasn’t even f------ fat."

“I would have said to journalists, I would have responded, I would have said, ‘Don’t you dare treat me like this. I’m a young woman, my body is changing, I’m figuring it out, I’m deeply insecure, I’m terrified, don’t make this any harder than it already is.’ That’s bullying, you know, and actually borderline abusive, I would say.”

But she told Porter that fame is not the "burden" it once was.

“It’s not a burden, any of it. 'Titanic' continues to bring people huge amounts of joy. The only time I am like, ‘Oh God, hide,’ is if we are on a boat somewhere," she said.