A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Frank Reed
Date: 2014 Dec 25, 14:14 -0800
Lu, I believe the whaleship "actor" is the Phoenix of Dell Quay. This small 'tall ship' was originally built in Denmark in 1929, but it has been rebuilt several times for movies. A few years back, it looked like the Santa Maria. It is now restored to a more traditional appearance. One might ask, "why not hire the Charles W. Morgan? It's a real whaleship." The Morgan, though it is certainly authentic and seaworthy now, is too big for the part (and also too valuable). The Essex was built around 1800. It was about two-thirds the size of the Morgan by most measures. The Phoenix is about the right size and creates the proper impression of a relatively fragile vessel. A goldfish with a grudge could have sunk the Essex (well, a forty-foot goldfish, maybe...). A later whaleship, like the Morgan, would have survived the whale's attack, no problen. The whale in the movie, judging from the trailers, appears to have been exaggerated by a factor of three in size and maybe a factor of two in speed and agility, as is common in movies. To me the film looks dark and dreary. If I had to wager, I would bet on a box office flop. But then again, it's Ron Howard's project, so ya never know...
Conanicut Island USA