NatGeo Rides 'Titanic,' Cameron To Ratings Success

 National Geographic Channel's Sunday-night special Titanic: The Final Word With James Cameron was the network's best such premiere with the Nielsen crowd since a presidential sit-down about 9/11.

The heavily marketed and National Geographic Society-packaged show, a two-hour special at 8 p.m. ET/PT, averaged a P25-54 0.8 rating, the network's highest-rated special since George W. Bush: The 9/11 Interview on Sunday, Aug. 28, 2011 (P25-54 1.0 rating). More than 1.7 million total viewers over age 2, including 771,000 viewers in the key P25-54 demo, tuned in to the premiere, the network said. The special repeated Monday night at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET/PT.

Timed to the release of Titanic 3D from NGC/Fox Networks sister studio Twentieth Century Fox, Oscar-winning filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer-In-Residence James Cameron brings together some the world's leading Titanic experts, including engineers, naval architects, artists and historians, to solve the lingering mysteries of why and how the "unsinkable" ship sank.

Following the Monday encore, NGC's two-night world premiere event continued with the man who discovered the ship's final resting place more than 25 years ago: Dr. Robert Ballard (pictured, l.). In Save the Titanic with Bob Ballard, premiering at 10 p.m. ET/PT, Dr. Ballard retraces Titanic's beginnings and examines the ship's original plans to reveal untold stories of Titanic's heroes and the unwritten story of Titanic's future.

This article was edited on April 10.