The actor who played the ‘little Irish boy’ in Titanic recently revealed just how much he still makes from the film today, and it may surprise you.
Unless you were living under a rock at the time, it would be hard not to be aware of the movie Titanic. Released in cinemas to worldwide acclaim in 1997, it has proven to be one of the most popular films ever since.
The film helped to launch the careers of actors Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio into superstardom. However, a lesser-known fact is that even actors who had a minor role in the production still benefit from their appearance in the film to this day.
One in particular, who you may remember as the ‘little Irish boy’ from Titanic, has revealed how much he still makes from the film today.
A minor but important role – showcasing the plight of the lower class aboard the ship
One such person who still benefits from their role in the film is Reece Thompson, who, at five years old, played the little Irish boy in Titanic.
His role helped showcase the plight that most of the lower class suffered aboard the ship, which was built in Belfast. Thompson’s role in the film was a minor one that required him to appear in three scenes and speak one line.
Thompson revealed to Business Insider UK that at the time, his mother luckily turned down a gas station advert in favour of his inclusion in the film.
He said, “It turned out to be one of the highest grossing films in history, so it’s pretty bizarre in retrospect. 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.”
A successful film – reaping the rewards
The film, based on the ill-fated ship, grossed $2.187 billion at the box office, making it one of the most successful films of all time.
Thompson revealed that he earned around $30,000 from his role in the film and still receives residuals that usually come in the post and tend to be about $100 to $300.
He said, “It’s weird because it’s not present in my mind anymore. 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’,” told Reece.
Speaking of his role in Titanic, his on-screen mother, played by Jenette Goldstein, spoke recently about filming the heartbreaking scene.
She had this funny story to tell, “I’ll tell you one thing about the little boy [played by] Reece Thompson. After we do the scene, he goes to me, ‘So when are we gonna do the next scene?’
“And I said, ‘Which one?’ And he goes, ‘The one where we get onto the boats and escape’. Oh my god. I was just like, ‘Uhhhh, talk to your mom’.”
What is the little Irish boy from Titanic doing now ‒ a career change from acting
Today, Reece Thompson, after foregoing a career in acting, is based in Utah. He works at a skiing and snowboarding resort.
Looking back on his role in Titanic, he conceded that his Irish accent probably doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. He admitted, “If you listen to it, it doesn’t sound very Irish; 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.”