Thursday, January 13, 2011
Avatar's James Cameron peers into the future and finds it all 3D
DESPITE some unsatisfying experiences, the filmmaker behind Titanic and Avatar believes 3D movies will be standard in cinemas within five years.
James Cameron, who is the executive producer of the new Australian film Sanctum, said in Sydney it was just a matter of time before the format expanded from largely animation, action and sci-fi to all types of movies. ''Colour took 25 years, sound took about two years,'' he said.
''They're both obvious improvements; 3D is an obvious improvement so it's just a question of how quickly it rolls out. ''My guess is that within the next five years we'll be almost completely in 3D in theatres.'' The three-time Oscar-winner, who took the format into a new era with Avatar, says it would be a ''fantastic choice'' if the director Baz Luhrmann made the drama The Great Gatsby in 3D as suggested - contentiously for some - this week.
''The enhancement is the same type of enchancement that you get with 5.1 Surround Sound, for example - a greater sense of involvement and physical presence of the audience in the events that are taking place on the screen,'' Cameron said. ''That can be a very powerful enhancement for drama.''
The Australian director Alister Grierson, whose last film was Kokoda, used the same 3D cameras as Avatar to shoot Sanctum in a water tank on the Gold Coast and outback caves in South Australia. An adventure film about a cave diving expedition that goes disastrously wrong, it stars Richard Roxburgh, Rhys Wakefield and Ioan Gruffudd.
The film was inspired by a caving expedition led by its producer and co-writer, Andrew Wight, that nearly ended in tragedy in 1988. A storm trapped 15 people beneath the Nullarbor Plain for two days before they were rescued.
''It was a very harrowing experience … watching all this water flood into the cave and boulders the size of motor cars just rolling down,'' he said.
''You could hear scuba tanks banging off the walls.
''I was on a small ledge about the size of a dining room table with the roof just at head [level] and it was inching ever closer down as the cave was collapsing. There was a point where I thought it was all over.''
Cameron said the $30 million Sanctum was the first of a number of smaller films he planned to make with Wight in addition to the ''mega pictures'' he will direct, including Avatar 2 and Avatar 3.
''We never saw [Sanctum] as an Australian production,'' he said. ''We saw it as a film for a global audience.''
at 2:20 PM