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James Cameron, Avatar

Mark Fellman/20th Century Fox

Avatar has been a hit, or miss, depending on which movie blabber-mouths you pay attention to, but there's no doubt the totally fun movie ride's doing well at the box office.

Maybe not as well as James Cameron and the film's financers would have hoped (since this movie cost like, what, $300 gazillion to make?), but lets get real: its making money, and it'll make even more so on down the line.

We chatted with the elusive Hollywood director himself recently. Wanted to get his take on the big-budget flick and why (in our opinion) most movies are just sucking nowadays...

Avatar is the first film Cameron has directed since Titanic, about 12 years ago (for you Entourage fans Aquaman doesn't exactly count). Sure, James has been behind the scenes a lot, but this is the first time in ages the notoriously difficult director (which is perhaps allowed with his cred) has had the spotlight on him.

Let's face it. Movies are kinda crap recently. Agree, James?

"Well you know, in the tough economic times right now, the studios are retrenching to stuff they know will be a solid performer. That might be whether it's Spiderman 4 or Harry Potter 6 or whatever it is, it's a franchise that has a built in [fan] base. It's harder to make this type of picture which is not based on anything else."

What about going against the corporate grain, though?

"As an artist, you always want to push against the limits. We pushed against the limits of what was actually possible to do with this movie, and we also pushed against the limits of how wise it would be from a marketing perspective to even make a film that's not a franchised movie at this budget level."

OK, Mr. Cameron, speaking of franchises, where's Titantic 2, already?

"Titanic 2, hah," James said, laughing. "What would it be? Jack and Rose the early years?"

Anything to get Kate and Leo to reprise their roles thank you very much!

"No, no," J-Cam finally said, total party pooper. Doesn't he know Leo needs a damn comeback?

Apparently not. 


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