HomeAmerican Entertainment‘9-1-1’ Reused Sets From a James Cameron Classic to Create a Disaster Scene

‘9-1-1’ Reused Sets From a James Cameron Classic to Create a Disaster Scene

by Jacklyn Krol
Fox, Getty Images

Did you know that a James Cameron movie was the original set of 9-1-1?

The famed director and producer actually created the original set for the 9-1-1 Season 3 episode entitled “Sink or Swim”. The Santa Monica flood sequence was actually shot in a different country.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, showrunner Tim Minear spoke about the set’s iconic history. The tank that they used for the swimming tsunami scenes was originally constructed for the Titanic back in 1997.

“These tanks are huge,” Minear told the outlet. “We built city streets in these tanks. And when you look at some aerial shots from the drones, you see in one corner of these enormous tanks are city streets, and then a lot of water, like a mile of it, and then there is a Ferris wheel sticking out of the ocean. Those are the tanks that we used.”

In an interview with Assignment X, Oliver Stark spoke about the larger-than-life stunt. It involved the coordination of the cast, cameramen, stuntmen, and the epic set.

“Yeah, we went down and we shot it in Rosarita, in Mexico,” he recalled. “They have these huge tanks that were actually built for TITANIC. So we got to go and recreate Santa Monica Pier in these tanks, and make it happen there.”

He revealed that the series made it seem bigger than it actually was.

Oh, they’re not actually that deep,” he confirmed. “I could stand up in it, and it would be at my waist.”

‘9-1-1’ Finales and Beyond

Minear spoke to the Observer about the 9-1-1 and 9-1-1: Lonestar season finales. He’s hoping to be able to tell more of the characters’ origin stories and future crossover opportunities.

“My story this year was the origin of the Judd-Grace love story,” he explained. “It wasn’t exactly the kind of ‘begins’ story that we would do on 9-1-1 where it’s always been about how a character ended up in the fire department, how they decided to become a first-responder. There was a little bit of that in the Judd-Grace story, but really, it was the origin of their love story, and I thought that was really interesting.”

He also revealed that one backstory will be taking place far away in New York City.

“I tried to do [it] this year,” he admitted. “But I couldn’t quite pull it off. So I’d like to do that next year.”

Scheduling and planning a crossover event takes a lot of time and coordination. They’re also shot in two completely different areas, Texas and California.

“And I think that if the stars align, I would absolutely love to do another crossover between the two shows. I loved seeing the different combinations of characters meeting and interacting in episode 3 of Lone Star this year, in the wildfire episode. But I would like it to feel as organic as that did and not just gimmicky,” he shared.