James Cameron on “Endgame” Beating “Avatar”
“It gives me a lot of hope,” Cameron told Deadline. “Avengers: Endgame is demonstrable proof that people will still go to movie theaters. The thing that scared me most about making Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 was that the market might have shifted so much that it simply was no longer possible to get people that excited about going and sitting in a dark room with a bunch of strangers to watch something.”
Much Ado About Avatar
Much has been made of the two beats to that statement; regarding Cameron’s sense of 1.) relief and 2.) fear of flopping with Avatar 2 and 3.
But his words were actually a lot more even-keeled than the headlines would have revealed.
“Will Avatar 2 and 3 be able to create that kind of success in the zeitgeist? Who knows. We’re trying. Maybe we do, maybe we don’t, but the point is, it’s still possible,” Cameron told Deadline. “I’m happy to see it, as opposed to an alternate scenario where, with the rapid availability, custom-designed experience that everybody can create for themselves with streaming services and all the different platforms, that [theatrical potential] might not have existed anymore.”
A little background from Slashfilm put Cameron’s perspective into context:
Amazingly, Cameron, who just celebrated his 65th birthday, has directed a grand total of just 10 films in his career (and that’s counting two aquatic-life documentaries, Ghosts of the Abyss in 2003 and Aliens of the Deep in 2005).
The Canadian filmmaker made his directorial debut in 1981 with Piranha II: The Spawning but scored his breakthrough with his second feature film, The Terminator, in 1984, which established the writer-director as a force to be reckoned with in sci-fi and spectacle filmmaking. That was followed by Aliens (1986), The Abyss (1989), Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), True Lies (1994), Titanic (1997) and Avatar (2009).
Avatar, Cameron Return
So it’s been a while. But both Avatar and Disney fans are happy to see him back on the case:
“Not that I wouldn’t do something for streaming where you can get into the characters in a different way but what I love the most to do is to create that completely kind of subsuming experience where you turn off your phone and you engage. You as an audience member engage for two hours or two and a half hours, whatever it is. And that still exists!” James Cameron, filmmaker