Saturday, October 20, 2007

Avatar Begins

James Cameron is a directorial machine. He may take his time making films, but man what films they are. His newest piece, a huge action sci fi film Avatar is shrouded in mystery, but its been one of Cameron's many dream projects for literally years. That he's now bringing this reportedly huge vision to the screen is something we should all be excited about. I mentioned this project briefly back in January but now that things are really rolling I thought a refresher was in order. According to this article, filming is kicking off in New Zealand at a budget of approximately $200 million USD. Although a few scened have already been shot in LA the majority of the film will be done on location overseas, with the effects being done by the masters of magic at Weta. For the moment there hasn't been too much buzz on Avatar, but mark my words, there will be. This film sounds great!

the film is set on a distant planet some 200 years in the future, and is as Cameron describes it "an old fashioned jungle adventure with an environmental conscience". In the initial press release on the film it was described more thoroughly as "an emotional journey of redemption and revolution. It is the story of a wounded ex-marine, thrust unwillingly into an effort to settle and exploit an exotic planet rich in bio-diversity, who eventually crosses over to lead the indigenous race in a battle for survival". The film stars Sam Worthington, as Jake Sully, the "paralyzed former marine who undergoes an experiment to exist as an avatar, another version of himself... an alien – 10 feet (three meters) tall and blue." I'm sure he does it all for love and justice though; and that's where the film will get juicy. I mean it almost sounds like a John Carter of Mars story!

The film costars Zoe Saldana who we all know was recently cast as Uhura in Star Trek as the love interest in the film. She is a woman who was at some point in the past betrayed by Sully and is entirely computer generated... okay... hmmm. We also get some fantastic supporting characters with Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez and Giovanni Ribisi all lending their talents.

There's a lot going on with this film, and while buzz hasn't gotten too crazy yet, production is being watched very closely. We should keep our eyes on this one, Cameron back in charge of a huge sci fi epic is definitely something to take note of. More to come on this film as it develops. For now it's set as a May 22, 2009 release.


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