Russian polar submarine TV footage faked
Monday, August 13, 2007
Part of the video footage of the Russian submarines (MIR 1 and 2) planting a flag on the sea bed at the North pole, shown by Russian state TV channel Rossiya and re-broadcasted by Reuters, included shots from the James Cameron film Titanic, according to a Finnish newspaper.
The inclusion of the Titanic fragment was spotted by a 13-year-old Finnish boy, Waltteri Seretin, who compared Reuters' pictures with his own DVD version of the Titanic film. He alerted the Finnish tabloid paper Ilta-Sanomat. Screen grabs form the Rossiya footage were shown on web sites and newspapers around the world.
The two MIR submarines used in the Russian expedition were designed in Russia but actually made in Finland, and were indeed used in the Titanic film. However The Guardian reports that the shots used by Rossiya were in fact models shot in the studio. The Russian channel broadcast the pictures before the pole was reached and claimed it was using it in the same spirit as library footage. However Reuters gave the impression that it was actual footage of the expedition. Reuters published an apology, but only admitted that the pictures were from the Atlantic, not the Arctic, and not admitting that the footage showed a studio model.
- "Russia claims North Pole by planting flag on seabed" — Wikinews, August 2, 2007
- "Ilta-Sanomat reveals embarrassing error in Reuters feed on Russian North Pole sub expedition" — , August 12, 2007
- Tom Parfitt. "Revealed: why those Russian submarine heroics might have looked a little familiar" — , August 11 , 2007
- Leigh Holmwood. "Reuters gets that sinking feeling" — , August 10, 2007
- Helen Long. "Russia plants flag under N Pole" — , August 2, 2007 (as of August 12 2007 caption has been added to the video to identify the Titanic footage)