Tall Ships In the Movies

Tall Ships are romantic and make for good pictures! And there are many “tall ship” movie stars out there.

The founding of Toronto Brigantine was actually inspired by the Tall Ships in the movies.  It was in 1960, a Toronto Businessman, J Garfield Lorriman and his wife Mary, were impressed by a film about the great Norwegian sail trianing ship Christian Radich features in the movie,  Windjammer.  And after seeing that movie, the dream to build a youth sail training ship for Toronto was born.  The Christian Radick is 72 metres  long versus the Pathfinder and Playfair that are 77 feet long – but hey almost the same.

And then there are these ships that have been in Hollywood movies.  Coincidently, all of these Tall Ships are scheduled to participate in this summers Great Lakes United Tall Ships Challenge 2010.

Red Witch, a gaff schooner from Chicago IL, was named after the epic sea story, Wake of the Red Witch by Garland Roark. The spacious salon is decorated with original posters and pictures from the 1949 movie starring John Wayne and Gail Russell.

The Roseway, a schooner, from St. Croix US Virgin Islands was in the movie “Captain Courageous” in 1977

The Amistad, a topsail schooner, from New Haven CT, starred in Steven Spielsberg’s movie Amistad in 1997.

HMS Bounty, a full rigged ship, from Long Island NY, a tall ship that was built in 1960 for MGM Studies for the movie Mutiny on the Bounty by the shipwrights of Smith and Ruhland in Lunenberg, NS. It was built as a replica of the original Bounty.

The Bounty starred in many movies including:

  • Mutiny on the Bounty with Marlon Brando in 1962 – see the Movie Trailer on youtube
  • Treasure Island with Charlton Heston, Christian Bale and others  in 1989 – see the Movie Trailer
  • Yellow Beard
  • SpongeBob Square Pants The Movie
  • Pirates of the Caribbean – Dead Man’s Chest with Johnny Depp in 2005

The Bounty was also in some TV Shows including:

several of Toronto Brigantine friends contributed in some part to the movie “Master and Commander”.  It was the launch day of “Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World” was released on DVD. The location was Toronto Harbour, where Pathfinder and Playfair played out a mock sea battle.  It aired on Discovery Channel’s show Daily Planet.

While the Playfair and Pathfinder aren’t as big as The Bounty and don’t carry canons, we do look just as pretty. Here is a picture of the tall ships off Port Stanley and Port Bruce Ontario. Posted on Flickr by BruceandLetty.   Don’t they look pretty enough for the movies.


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