The most anticipated Lego model of all time – the RMS Titanic – will be released in time for Christmas, the Belfast Telegraph can reveal.
Comprised of 9,090 enticing pieces, the latest in the Lego Creator Expert series will be the company’s second largest building set, beaten only by the company’s 11,695 world map.
The price tag is also breathtaking – around £ 450 – but that won’t stop it from becoming a worldwide bestseller.
Rumors of an “official” Lego model of the ill-fated Belfast-built ship have been rife for several years, but now – and, ironically, thanks to a leak from inside Danish society – they are on the verge of becoming reality.
Prior to this model, which is over a meter long and is slated to hit the open market in early November, the only “official” Titanic replica that could be built from similar bricks was made by Lego’s Polish rival Cobi – at only 722 pieces.
Lego’s interest in the world’s most famous ship, which was launched from the Harland and Wolff shipyard in May 1911, has been heightened by the number of enthusiasts who have built their own replicas in recent years.
Earlier this year, a teacher completed one that used 25,000 bricks and captured every detail of the luxury liner – to the bottom of the iceberg that sank it on its catastrophic maiden voyage from Southampton to New York in April 1912, with the loss of 1,500 lives.
Niklaus Meier (31), from Lucerne, Switzerland, spent £ 2,400 on bricks and, with no instructions to follow, took eight weeks to reproduce the ship at a scale of 1: 145.
The larger one, however, was revealed last year – a stunning 26-foot-long replica built by an autistic boy from Iceland.
Unlike Mr. Meier, Brynjar Karl Birgisson (15) used actual blueprints of the luxury ship White Star to decide how many Lego bricks he would need.
The massive model took him over 700 hours and over 65,000 Lego bricks to assemble.
After hearing about Birgisson’s project, Lego itself subsidized it with a discount on some of the necessary bricks.
Commercially, there is little risk for Lego in releasing a replica of the Titanic.
Some 110 years after leaving Belfast Lough for the first time, the story of the so-called ‘unsinkable’ ship – the largest and most luxurious in the world at the time – remains as intriguing as ever.
Titanic Belfast, which opened in 2012, was named the world’s leading tourist attraction at the World Travel Awards four years later.
And a full-size replica of the ship is currently under construction in China, although the project – which began in 2013 – has been plagued by funding issues.
The original Titanic, which rose alongside its sisters Olympic and Gigantic (later renamed Britannic) in the shipyard, took just over two years to build its 14,000 employees.
But it only took 90 minutes to sink into the frigid North Atlantic, bringing with it some of the richest people in the world and hundreds of other immigrants from the UK, Ireland and beyond. who were looking for a new life in the United States.
James Cameron’s 1997 film Titanic, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, was the first film to earn a billion dollars at the box office and remains one of the most successful productions in Hollywood history.