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James Cameron’s “Avatar,” Fourteen Years in the Making

James Cameron from Your Studio and You

When I started at Corona’s Coming Attractions, around 1997 or so, there were a number of pages that predated me getting there. One was Cameron‘s Avatar. And before the site went away, that page was one of the most convoluted that we had: it was project-lives, project-is-dead over and over and over again. From 1996 to 2000. One of the most amusing things for me is that the bit about this being Cameron’s follow-up to Titanic turned out to be accurate. Of course he’s been busy filming at the bottom of the ocean and playing amateur archaeology sponsor for fake relics, but hey, the man can have his hobbies.

Now I know I try to break down a lot of news for you, but this Hollywood Reporter article you really just need to go read for yourself. This movie sounds like it might be the cure for the Robert Zemeckis CG Zombie Blues. Check out this taste:

[ad#longpost]“Once we’ve laid down a take, the take exists in the digital asset management system,” he said. “It an be accessed at any time. Long after the actors have gone home, I’m still out there with the virtual camera, shooting coverage on the scene. I just have to play the take back. I can do the close up, the wide shot. … I can even move them around on a limited basis. We relight it. We do all kinds of things…I’m still doing a lot of virtual camera work on the film … on stuff that was shot six months ago.”

Sounds like the damn thing might have been worth the wait if he can use all of those tools to make a killer sci-fi pic. And then if the technology is that good, maybe we can fix Phantom Menace.

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