James Cameron's blockbuster romance Titanic is heading towards a new box office record, in part thanks to boffo Chinese audiences for the film's 3D re-release amid the anniversary events recalling the ocean liner disaster.

Originally released in 1997, the Canadian-born filmmaker's epic drama was re-issued in a 3D-converted version earlier this year.

The re-release was timed to centennial events marking the sinking of New York-bound luxury liner in the North Atlantic on April 15, 1912.

Titanic has now crossed the $2 billion US threshold marking worldwide lifetime ticket sales.

The film hit $2.03 billion US this past weekend — which included Sunday, the actual anniversary of the Titanic's sinking — in part due to a box office haul of more than $88 million overseas, including the 3D version's $58 million US debut in China.

Only one other movie stands in Titanic's way in the record books: Cameron's 2009 sci-fi romance and 3D adventure tale Avatar, which earned $2.8 billion in worldwide ticket sales.