10 Facts you never knew about Leo and the making of Titanic

1. Leo wasn't the first choice for the part of Jack. Screenwriter and director James Cameron considered Matthew McConaughey and Chris O'Donnell before deciding that both actors were too old to play the poor artist.

2. Kate Winslet was so wowed by the role of Rose that after her screen test she sent Cameron a single rose with a single card signed "From your Rose" and followed it up with a personal phone call. The Ploy Worked! She swiped the part out from under fellow contenders Gwyneth Paltrow, Claire Danes and Gabrielle Anwar.

3. Cameron named Rose after his grand-mother Rose Cameron, a schoolteacher who always encouraged him to read.

4. This was Leo's first million-dollar-plus paycheck. But he originally wasn't sold on the role and encouraged Cameron to make the character of Jack more interesting.

5. Extra!Extra! Titanic star Kate Winslet nearly drowns. Well, not exactly...but that's what a supermarket tabloid published after hearing about a mishap on the set. Here's the real deal: While she was running away from a huge rushing wave, Kate got her long coat stuck on a gate and was briefly trapped underwater until she could removre the costume.

6. Thirty lifeguards kept constant watch over the 17-million gallon water tank where much of the movie's filming took place. Not one of the cast of 150 (or the 200 extras or 800 crew members) drowned, although three stuntmen broke bones.

7. Since the shots on the decks of the ship were filmed in sunny, hot Mexico, special effects artists had to digitally add the white puffs of breath that come out of the actors' mouths so the scenes would look like a trip across the icy Atlantic and not a Carubbean cruise.

8. While on location in Mexico, Leo was so homesick for his L.A. friends that he had them flown down to be with him. (he usually has a clause in his contract that enableshis pals to fly for free to wherever he's filming.) Among the star's closest comrades are Titanic assistant Jonah Johnson, and fellow actors Tobey Maguire, Kevin Connolly, Vincent Laresca, Dash Mihok and Ethan Suplee.

9. Three weeks into production, while shooting in Nova Scotia, about 50 cast and crew members were reportedly hospitalized after falling ill from tainted lobster chowder. Authorities smelled something fishy and investigated. Turns out someone had laced the seafood with the drug PCP.(the perpetrator was never found)

10. Remember when the ship's bridge was flooded by water crashing through the windows? It was one of the most dangerous sequences in the movies. Director Cameron, an ecperienced scuba diver, filmed the whole scene himself wearing a wet suit and a crash helmet.

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