Why did Clive Palmer decide to build a replica of the Titanic?

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kipling2448 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

   "[By] taking Titanic II, by recreating that ... we've built it with a concept of love that we all want. And that's what's common to man - in China, in Europe and the United States. And that's why it has got such universal appeal.
   "The Titanic is an international project linking continents together and the demand has shown it's important." (The Canberra Times)

During his February 2013 press conference in New York, where he announced his intentions to build an exact, functioning replica of the Titanic, Palmer declared that “the Titanic was a ship of dreams.  Titanic II will be the ship where dreams come true…You can take your wife and fall in love again.”   Insight into Palmer’s imagination and vision with respect to the Titanic project was also evident in his statement that, “I’m looking forward to banging the drums, playing the fiddle and getting dizzy as I twirl around like Leonardo [Dicaprio].”  This last comment is of particular interest when discussing his motivation for the project: like millions of other people around the world, he is both fascinated by the history of the original Titanic, and was mesmerized by the 1997 film by director James Cameron.  In fact, his New York press conference was immediately preceded by a performance of “My Heart Will Go On,” the popular song from the film. [See article linked below: “’A Ship Where Dreams Come True,’ Professor Palmer Launches Titanic II Plans,” The Sydney Morning Herald, February 27, 2013]

While Palmer is clearly enamored of the legend of the Titanic, he is also a shrewd businessman who understands business and marketing.  He is a self-made billionaire, who does not like to be told what he can and cannot do.  In an interview with the Australian press, Palmer noted with regard to the Titanic project, “It was meant to be just a recreational thing that we’re doing for the benefit of the world but it’s going to be very profitable.”  And, regarding the challenge of going against conventional wisdom and staking his own fortune on the project: “I’m sick of people telling me what I can’t do.  So far I haven’t found anything I can’t do.” [“Titanic II Not Designed to Make Money: Clive Palmer,” The Age, August 28, 2013]

Clive Palmer is building the Titanic II because he is fascinated with the idea of the Titanic, wants to share it with the public, and wants to prove that it can be done.