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What 1937 event gave Paul Gallico the idea to write 'The Poseidon Adventure'?

Question #120966. Asked by 29CoveRoad.

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One of the early passengers of the Queen Mary was author Paul Gallico. In 1937, Gallico was on a trans-Atlantic voyage sitting in the First Class Dining Saloon when the ship suddenly listed over to port from a series of large waves. The list was at such a sharp angle that all of the plates of food on his table were thrown to the ground and he reportedly spied the ocean close to his window. The incident would make an impression on Gallico and would serve as a major inspiration years later for his 1969 novel, The Poseidon Adventure.

The book concerned a luxurious ocean liner by the name of the S.S. Poseidon that is capsized by a large tidal wave and the various survivors struggling to reach surface before the craft sinks. While making little impact at the time of its release, its major impact would come in 1972 with a film adaptation of the same name that starred Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine, Red Buttons, Carol Lynley, Roddy McDowall, Shelly Winters, Leslie Nielsen, and many others. Interestingly enough, the R.M.S. Queen Mary served as a model for the construction of the Poseidon and was even used for filming in the early scenes prior to the fictional ship capsizing.


Apr 03 2011, 5:42 PM
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