James Francis Cameron (born August 16, 1954) is a Canadian filmmaker, philanthropist, and deep-sea explorer. After working in special effects, he found major success after directing and writing the science fiction action film The Terminator (1984). He then became a popular Hollywood director and was hired to write and direct Aliens (1986); three years later he followed up with The Abyss (1989). He found further critical acclaim for his use of special effects in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991). After his film True Lies (1994), Cameron took on his biggest film at the time, Titanic (1997), which earned him Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Film Editing.
After Titanic, Cameron began a project that took almost 10 years to make: his science-fiction epic Avatar (2009), which was in particular a landmark for 3D technology, and for which he received nominations for the same three Academy Awards. Despite Avatar being his only movie made to date in 3D, Cameron is the most successful 3D film-maker in terms of box-office revenue. In the time between making Titanic and Avatar, Cameron spent several years creating many documentary films (specifically underwater documentaries) and co-developed the digital 3D Fusion Camera System. Described by a biographer as part scientist and part artist, Cameron has also contributed to underwater filming and remote vehicle technologies. On March 26, 2012, Cameron reached the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the ocean, in the Deepsea Challenger submersible. He is the first person to do this in a solo descent, and is only the third person to do so ever. In 2010, Time magazine listed Cameron among the 100 most influential people in the world.
In total, Cameron's directorial efforts have grossed approximately US$2 billion in North America and US$6 billion worldwide. Not adjusted for inflation, Cameron's Titanic and Avatar are the two highest-grossing films of all time at $2.19 billion and $2.78 billion respectively. Cameron also holds the distinction of having directed the first two of the four films in history to gross over $2 billion worldwide (the later two being Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Avengers: Infinity War). In March 2011, he was named Hollywood's top earner by Vanity Fair, with estimated 2010 earnings of $257 million. In October 2013, a new species of frog Pristimantis jamescameroni from Venezuela was named after him in recognition of his efforts in environmental awareness, in addition to his public promotion of veganism.
Cameron in 2012
James Francis Cameron
August 16, 1954
|Residence||Malibu, California, U.S.|
Wairarapa, New Zealand
|Alma mater||Fullerton College|
California State University, Fullerton
|Net worth||US $700 million|
(m. 1978; div. 1984)
Gale Anne Hurd
(m. 1985; div. 1989)
(m. 1989; div. 1991)
(m. 1997; div. 1999)
Cameron was born in 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada, the son of Shirley (née Lowe), an artist and nurse, and Phillip Cameron, an electrical engineer. His paternal great-great-great-grandfather emigrated from Balquhidder, Scotland, in 1825.
Cameron grew up in Chippawa, Ontario, and attended Stamford Collegiate School in Niagara Falls, Ontario. His family moved to Brea, California in 1971, when Cameron was 17 years old. He dropped out of Sonora High School, then attended Brea Olinda High School to further his secondary education.
Cameron enrolled at Fullerton College, a two-year community college, in 1973 to study physics. He switched to English, then dropped out before the start of the fall 1974 semester. Next, he worked several jobs, including as a truck driver, writing when he had time. During this period he taught himself about special effects: "I'd go down to the USC library and pull any thesis that graduate students had written about optical printing, or front screen projection, or dye transfers, anything that related to film technology. That way I could sit down and read it, and if they'd let me photocopy it, I would. If not, I'd make notes."
Cameron quit his job as a truck driver to enter the film industry after seeing Star Wars in 1977. When Cameron read Syd Field's book Screenplay, it occurred to him that integrating science and art was possible, and he wrote a 10-minute science-fiction script with two friends, titled Xenogenesis. They raised money, rented camera, lenses, film stock and studio then shot it in 35 mm. They dismantled the camera to understand how to operate it and spent the first half-day of the shoot trying to figure out how to get it running.
He was the director, writer, producer, and production designer for Xenogenesis (1978). He then became an uncredited production assistant on Rock and Roll High School in 1979. While continuing to educate himself in filmmaking techniques, Cameron started working as a miniature model maker at Roger Corman Studios. Making rapidly produced, low-budget productions taught Cameron to work efficiently. He soon found employment as an art director in the sci-fi movie Battle Beyond the Stars (1980). He did special effects work design and direction on John Carpenter's Escape from New York (1981), acted as production designer on Galaxy of Terror (1981), and consulted on the design of Android (1982).
Cameron was hired as the special effects director for the sequel to Piranha, entitled Piranha II: The Spawning in 1982. The original director, Miller Drake, left the project due to creative differences with producer Ovidio Assonitis, who then gave Cameron his first job as director. The interior scenes were filmed in Rome, Italy, while the underwater sequences were shot at Grand Cayman Island.
The movie was to be produced in Jamaica. On location, production slowed due to numerous problems and adverse weather. James Cameron was fired after failing to get a close up of Carole Davis in her opening scene. Ovidio ordered Cameron to do the close-up the next day before he started on that day's shooting. Cameron spent the entire day sailing around the resort, reproducing the lighting but still failed to get the close-up. After he was fired, Ovidio invited Cameron to stay on location and assist in the shooting. Once in Rome, Ovidio took over the editing when Cameron was stricken with food poisoning. During his illness, Cameron had a nightmare about an invincible robot hitman sent from the future to kill him, giving him the idea for The Terminator, which later catapulted his film career.
After completing a screenplay for The Terminator, Cameron decided to sell it so that he could direct the movie. However, the production companies he contacted, while expressing interest in the project, were unwilling to let a largely inexperienced feature film director make the movie. Finally, Cameron found a company called Hemdale Pictures, which was willing to let him direct. Gale Anne Hurd, who had started her own production company, Pacific Western Productions, had previously worked with Cameron in Roger Corman's company and agreed to buy Cameron's screenplay for one dollar, on the condition that Cameron direct the film. Hurd was signed on as a producer, and Cameron finally got his first break as director. Orion Pictures distributed the film. Hurd and Cameron were married from 1985 to 1989.
For the role of the Terminator, Cameron envisioned a man who was not exceptionally muscular, who could "blend into" a crowd. Lance Henriksen, who had starred in Piranha II: The Spawning, was considered for the title role, but when Arnold Schwarzenegger and Cameron first met over lunch to discuss Schwarzenegger's playing the role of Kyle Reese, both came to the conclusion that the cyborg villain would be the more compelling role for the Austrian bodybuilder; Henriksen got the smaller part of LAPD detective Hal Vukovich and the role of Kyle Reese went to Michael Biehn. In addition, Linda Hamilton first appeared in this film in her iconic role of Sarah Connor, and later married Cameron.
The Terminator was a box-office hit, breaking expectations by Orion Pictures executives that the film would be regarded as no more than a sci-fi film, and then only last a week in theaters. It was a low-budget film which cost $6.5 million to make, cutting expenses in such ways as recording the audio track in mono. However, The Terminator eventually earned over $78 million worldwide.
During the early 1980s, Cameron wrote three screenplays simultaneously: The Terminator, Aliens, and the first draft of Rambo: First Blood Part II. While Cameron continued with The Terminator and Aliens, Sylvester Stallone eventually took over the script of Rambo: First Blood Part II, creating a final draft which differed radically from Cameron's initial vision.
Cameron next began the sequel to Alien, the 1979 film by Ridley Scott. Cameron named the sequel Aliens and again cast Sigourney Weaver in the iconic role of Ellen Ripley. According to Cameron, the crew on Aliens was hostile to him, regarding him as a poor substitute for Ridley Scott. Cameron sought to show them The Terminator but the majority of the crew refused to watch it and remained skeptical of his direction throughout production. Despite this and other off-screen problems (such as clashing with an uncooperative camera man and having to replace one of the lead actors when Michael Biehn of Terminator took James Remar's place as Corporal Hicks), Aliens became a box-office success. It received Academy Award nominations for Best Actress for Weaver, Best Art Direction, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score, Best Sound, and won awards for Best Sound Editing and Best Visual Effects. In addition, the film and its lead actress made the cover of TIME magazine as a result of numerous and extensive scenes of women in combat; these were almost without precedent and expressed the feminist theme of the film very strongly.
Cameron's next project stemmed from an idea that had come up during a high school biology class. The story of oil-rig workers who discover otherworldly underwater creatures became the basis of Cameron's screenplay for The Abyss, which cast Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio and Michael Biehn. Initially budgeted at $41 million United States (though the production ran considerably over budget), it was considered to be one of the most expensive films of its time and required cutting-edge effects technology. Because much of the filming took place underwater and the technology wasn't advanced enough to digitally create an underwater environment, Cameron chose to shoot much of the movie "reel-for-real", at depths of up to 40 feet (12 m). For creation of the sets, the containment building of an unfinished nuclear power plant was converted, and two huge tanks were used. The main tank was filled with 7,500,000 US gallons (28,000,000 L) of water and the second with 2,500,000 US gallons (9,500,000 L). The cast and crew resided there for much of the filming.
After the success of The Terminator, there had been talking about a sequel to continue the story of Sarah Connor and her struggle against machines from the future. Although Cameron had come up with a core idea for the sequel, and Schwarzenegger expressed interest in continuing the story, there were still problems regarding who had the rights to the story, as well as the logistics of the special effects needed to make the sequel. Finally, in the late-1980s, Mario Kassar of Carolco Pictures secured the rights to the sequel, allowing Cameron to greenlight production of the film, now called Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
For the film, Linda Hamilton reprised her iconic role of Sarah Connor. In addition, Schwarzenegger also returned in his role as The Terminator, but this time as a protector. Unlike Schwarzenegger's character—the T-800 Terminator which is made of a metal endoskeleton—the new villain of the sequel, called the T-1000, is a more advanced Terminator made of liquid metal, and with polymorphic abilities. The T-1000 would also be much less bulky than the T-800. For the role, Cameron cast Robert Patrick, a sharp contrast to Schwarzenegger. Cameron explained, "I wanted someone who was extremely fast and agile. If the T-800 is a human Panzer tank, then the T-1000 is a Porsche."
Cameron had originally wanted to incorporate this advanced-model-Terminator into the first film, but the special effects at the time were not advanced enough. The ground-breaking effects used in The Abyss to digitally depict the water tentacle convinced Cameron that his liquid metal villain was now possible.
TriStar Pictures agreed to distribute the film, but required a locked release date, intended to be about one year after the start of shooting. The movie, co-written by Cameron and his longtime friend, William Wisher Jr., had to go from screenplay to finished film in just that amount of time. Like Cameron's previous film, it was one of the most expensive films of its era, with a budget of about $100 million. The biggest challenge of the movie was the special effects used in creating the T-1000. Nevertheless, the film was finished on time and released to theaters on July 3, 1991.
Terminator 2, or T2, as it was abbreviated, broke box-office records (including the opening weekend record for an R-rated film), earning over $200 million in the United States and Canada, and over $300 million in other territories, and became the highest-grossing film of that year. It won four Academy Awards: Best Makeup, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Effects Editing, and Best Visual Effects. It was also nominated for Best Cinematography and Best Film Editing, but lost both Awards to JFK.
James Cameron announced a third Terminator film many times during the 1990s, but without coming out with any finished scripts. Kassar and Vajna purchased the rights to the Terminator franchise from a bankruptcy sale of Carolco's assets. Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines was eventually made and released in July 2003 without Cameron's involvement. Jonathan Mostow directed the film and Schwarzenegger returned as the Terminator.
Cameron reunited with the main cast of Terminator 2 to film T2 3-D: Battle Across Time, an attraction at Universal Studios Florida, Universal Studios Hollywood, and Universal Studios Japan. It was released in 1996 and was a mini-sequel to Terminator 2: Judgment Day. The show is in two parts: a prequel segment in which a spokesperson talks about Cyberdyne, and the main feature, in which the performers interact with a 3-D movie.
Before the release of T2, Schwarzenegger came to Cameron with the idea of remaking the French comedy La Totale! Titled True Lies, with filming beginning after T2's release, the story revolves around a secret-agent spy who leads a double life as a married man, whose wife believes he is a computer salesman. Schwarzenegger was cast as Harry Tasker, a spy charged with stopping a plan by a terrorist to use nuclear weapons against the United States. Jamie Lee Curtis and Eliza Dushku played the character's family, and Tom Arnold the sidekick.
Cameron's Lightstorm Entertainment signed on with Twentieth Century Fox for the production of True Lies. Made on a budget of $115 million and released in 1994, the film earned $146 million in North America, and $232 million abroad. The film received an Academy Award nomination for Best Visual Effects.
Cameron expressed interest in the 1912 sinking of the ship RMS Titanic and decided to script and film his next project based on this event. The picture revolved around a fictional romance story between two young lovers from different social classes who meet on board. Before production began, he took dives to the bottom of the Atlantic and shot actual footage of the ship underwater, which he inserted into the final film. Much of the film's dialogue was also written during these dives.
Subsequently, Cameron cast Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane, Kathy Bates, Frances Fisher, Gloria Stuart, Bernard Hill, Jonathan Hyde, Victor Garber, Danny Nucci, David Warner, Suzy Amis, and Bill Paxton as the film's principal cast. Cameron's budget for the film reached about $200 million, making it the most expensive movie ever made at the time. Before its release, the film was widely ridiculed for its expense and protracted production schedule.
Released to theaters on December 19, 1997, Titanic grossed less in its first weekend ($28.6 million) than in its second ($35.4 million), an increase of 23.8%. This is unheard of for a widely released film, which is a testament to the movie's appeal. This was especially noteworthy, considering that the film's running time of more than three hours limited the number of showings each theater could schedule. It held the No. 1 spot on the box-office charts for months, eventually grossing a total of $600.8 million in the United States and Canada and more than $1.84 billion worldwide. Titanic became the highest-grossing film of all time, both worldwide and in the United States and Canada, and was also the first film to gross more than $1 billion worldwide. It was the highest-grossing film from 1998 until 2010, when Cameron's 2009 film Avatar surpassed its gross.
The CG visuals surrounding the sinking and destruction of the ship were considered spectacular. Despite criticism during production of the film, it received a record-tying 14 Oscar nominations (tied with All About Eve) at the 1998 Academy Awards. It won 11 Oscars (also tying the record for most Oscar wins with Ben-Hur and later The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King), including: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Original Dramatic Score, Best Original Song. Upon receiving the Best Director Oscar, Cameron exclaimed, "I'm king of the world!", in reference to one of the main characters' lines from the film. After receiving the Best Picture Oscar along with Jon Landau, Cameron asked for a moment of silence for the 1,500 men, women, and children who died when the ship sank.
In March 2010, Cameron revealed that Titanic would be re-released in 3D in April 2012, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the real ship. On March 27, 2012, Cameron attended the world première with Kate Winslet at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Following the re-release, Titanic's domestic total was pushed to $658.6 million and more than $2.18 billion worldwide. It became the second film to gross more than $2 billion worldwide (the first being Avatar).
Cameron had initially next planned to do a film of the comic-book character Spider-Man, a project developed by Menahem Golan of Cannon Films. Columbia hired David Koepp to adapt Cameron's treatment into a screenplay, and Koepp's first draft is taken often word-for-word from Cameron's story, though later drafts were heavily rewritten by Koepp himself, Scott Rosenberg, and Alvin Sargent. Columbia preferred to credit David Koepp solely, and none of the scripts before or after his were ever examined by the Writers Guild of America, East to determine proper credit attribution. Cameron and other writers objected, but Columbia and the WGA prevailed. In its release in 2002, Spider-Man had its screenplay credited solely to Koepp.
Unable to make Spider-Man, Cameron moved to television and created Dark Angel, a superheroine-centered series influenced by cyberpunk, biopunk, contemporary superhero franchises, and third-wave feminism. Co-produced with Charles H. Eglee, Dark Angel starred Jessica Alba as Max Guevara, a genetically enhanced super-soldier created by a secretive organization. According to a website called DarkAngelFan.com, Cameron's work was said to "bring empowered female warriors back to television screens ... by mixing the sober feminism of his Terminator and Aliens characters with the sexed-up Girl Power of a Britney Spears concert." While a success in its first season, low ratings in the second led to its cancellation. Cameron himself directed the series finale, a two-hour episode wrapping up many of the series' loose ends.
In 1998, James and John David Cameron formed a digital media company, earthship.tv, which became Earthship Productions. The company produced live multimedia documentaries from the depths of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. With Earthship Productions, John Cameron's recent projects have included undersea documentaries on the Bismarck (Expedition: Bismarck, 2002) and the Titanic (Ghosts of the Abyss (2003, in IMAX 3D) and Tony Robinson's Titanic Adventure (2005)). He was a producer on the 2002 film Solaris, and narrated The Exodus Decoded.
Cameron is an advocate for stereoscopic digital 3D films. In a 2003 interview about his IMAX 2D documentary Ghosts of the Abyss, he mentioned that he is "going to do everything in 3D now". He has made similar statements in other interviews. Ghosts of the Abyss and Aliens of the Deep (also an IMAX documentary) were both shot in 3-D and released by Walt Disney Pictures and Walden Media, and Cameron did the same for his new project, Avatar for 20th Century Fox & Sony Pictures' Columbia Pictures. He intends to use the same technology for The Dive, Sanctum and an adaptation of the manga series Battle Angel Alita.
Cameron was the co-founder and CEO of Digital Domain, a visual-effects production and technology company.
In addition, he plans to create a 3-D project about the first trip to Mars. ("I've been very interested in the Humans to Mars movement—the 'Mars Underground'—and I've done a tremendous amount of personal research for a novel, a miniseries, and a 3-D film.") He is on the science team for the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory.
Cameron announced on February 26, 2007, that he, along with his director, Simcha Jacobovici, have documented the unearthing of the Talpiot Tomb, which is alleged to be the tomb of Jesus. Unearthed in 1980 by Israeli construction workers, the names on the tomb are claimed, in the documentary, to correlate with the names of Jesus and several individuals closely associated with him. The documentary, named The Lost Tomb of Jesus, was broadcast on the Discovery Channel on March 4, 2007.
As a National Geographic explorer-in-residence, Cameron re-investigated the sinking of the Titanic with eight experts in 2012. The investigation was featured in the TV documentary special Titanic: The Final Word with James Cameron, which premiered on April 8 on the National Geographic Channel. In the conclusion of the analysis, the consensus revised the CGI animation of the sinking conceived in 1995.
In June 2005, Cameron was announced to be working on a project tentatively titled "Project 880" (now known to be Avatar) in parallel with another project, Alita: Battle Angel (an adaptation of the manga series Battle Angel Alita). Both movies were to be shot in 3D. By December, Cameron stated that he wanted to film Battle Angel first, followed by Avatar. However, in February 2006, he switched goals for the two film projects and decided to film Avatar first. He mentioned that if both films were successful, he would be interested in seeing a trilogy being made for both. Alita: Battle Angel eventually began production in 2016 with Cameron writing and producing and Robert Rodriguez directing.
Avatar had an estimated budget of over $300 million and was released on December 18, 2009. This marked his first feature film since 1997's Titanic. It is composed almost entirely of computer-generated animation, using a more-advanced version of the "performance capture" technique used by director Robert Zemeckis in The Polar Express. James Cameron had written an 80-page scriptment for Avatar in 1995 and announced in 1996 that he would make the film after completing Titanic. In December 2006, Cameron explained that the delay in producing the film since the 1990s had been to wait until the technology necessary to create his project was advanced enough, since at the time no studio would finance for the development of the visual effects. The film was originally scheduled to be released in May 2009, but was pushed back to December 2009 to allow more time for post-production on the complex CGI and to give more time for theatres worldwide to install 3D projectors. Cameron originally intended Avatar to be 3D-only.
Avatar broke several box office records during its initial theatrical run. It grossed $749.7 million in the United States and Canada and more than $2.74 billion worldwide, becoming the highest-grossing film of all time in the United States and Canada, surpassing Cameron's Titanic. Avatar also became the first movie to ever earn more than $2 billion worldwide. Including revenue from the re-release of Avatar featuring extended footage, it grossed $760.5 million in the United States and Canada and more than $2.78 billion worldwide. It was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, and won three for Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography and Best Visual Effects.
Avatar's success made Cameron the highest earner in Hollywood for 2010, netting him $257 million as reported by Vanity Fair.
Cameron served as the executive producer of Sanctum, a film detailing the expedition of a team of underwater cave divers who find themselves trapped in a cave, their exit blocked and with no known way to reach the surface either in person or by radio contact.
In August 2013, Cameron announced his intention to film three sequels to Avatar simultaneously, to be released in December 2016, 2017, and 2018. However, on January 14, 2015, Cameron announced that the release dates for the three sequels were each delayed a year with the first sequel scheduled to be released in December 2017. In September 2017, the sequels to Avatar started production with the plan for the first to be released in December 2020, the next in 2021 and the next two in 2024 and 2025 respectively. Deadline Hollywood estimated that the budget for these would be over $1 billion in total.
Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 started preliminary shooting simultaneously in Manhattan Beach, California on August 15, 2017, followed by principal photography in New Zealand on September 25, 2017. The other sequels are expected to start shooting as soon as Avatar 2 and 3's filming wraps.
Although the last two sequels have been greenlit, Cameron stated in a November 26, 2017 interview: "Let's face it, if Avatar 2 and 3 don't make enough money, there's not going to be a 4 and 5".
His original plans were to do Battle Angel next, but he changed his mind due to Avatar's success; "My intention when I made Avatar was to do Battle Angel next. However, the positive feedback for Avatar and the support of the message of Avatar, encouraged me to do more of those films." Cameron's Lightstorm Entertainment bought the film rights to the Taylor Stevens novel The Informationist in October 2012 with plans for Cameron to direct it. A screenwriter will be hired to adapt the novel while Cameron works on the Avatar sequels. Another project Cameron has announced is a personal commitment to shoot a film on the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki as told through the story of Tsutomu Yamaguchi, a man who survived both attacks. Cameron met with Yamaguchi just days before he died in 2010.
In January 2017, it was reported that Cameron would be returning to the Terminator franchise as producer and creative consultant for the next film installment, with Tim Miller signed on as director. In May 2017, Arnold Schwarzenegger confirmed that he will return in the film and that James Cameron will be involved. In January 2017 it was also announced that Cameron would be making a documentary about the history of science fiction. Cameron stated, "Without Jules Verne and H. G. Wells, there wouldn't have been Ray Bradbury or Robert A. Heinlein, and without them, there wouldn't be [George] Lucas, [Steven] Spielberg, Ridley Scott or me."
In the mid-1990s, Cameron announced that he would make a Spider-Man film. The project was cancelled and dropped by Cameron when Carolco Pictures filed for bankruptcy. His script was rewritten by David Koepp for the 2002 movie Spider-Man, directed by Sam Raimi.
Although Cameron has resided in the United States since 1971, he remains a Canadian citizen. Cameron applied for American citizenship in 2004, but withdrew his application after George W. Bush won the presidential election. Cameron divides his time between his home in California and his second home in New Zealand, a country he fell in love with when he was filming Avatar. In 2016, Cameron partnered with Tourism New Zealand to produce a series of videos that expressed his love for the country.
Cameron has been a close friend of fellow filmmaker Guillermo del Toro since they met during the production of Del Toro's 1993 film Cronos. Around 1997, Del Toro's father, Federico del Toro, was kidnapped in Guadalajara. After learning of the kidnapping, Cameron gave Del Toro over $1 million in cash to help pay the ransom, as del Toro has invested all the cash he had at the time into his film, Mimic. The father was released after 72 days in captivity; the experience ultimately caused Del Toro to relocate his family to the United States from Mexico after the event, in fear of a similar event happening again.
The vast majority of the relics retrieved by various groups from the RMS Titanic were owned by Premier Exhibitions which filed for bankruptcy in 2016. In late August 2018, the groups vying to purchase the 5,500 relics, included one by museums in England and in Northern Ireland, with assistance by Cameron and some financial support from National Geographic. Oceanographer Robert Ballard said he favored this bid since it would ensure that the memorabilia would be permanently displayed in Belfast and in Greenwich. A decision as to the outcome was to be made by a United States district court judge.
Cameron has been married five times to the following spouses: Sharon Williams (1978–1984), Gale Anne Hurd (1985–1989), director Kathryn Bigelow (1989–1991), Linda Hamilton (1997–1999, daughter Josephine born in 1993), and Suzy Amis (2000–present). Cameron had dated Hamilton since 1991. Eight months after the marriage, however, they separated, and within days of Cameron's Oscar victory with Titanic, the couple announced their divorce. As part of the divorce settlement, Cameron was ordered to pay Hamilton $50 million. Hamilton later revealed that one reason for their divorce was that he had been dating Suzy Amis, an actress he cast as Lizzy Calvert in Titanic. He married Amis in 2000, and they have one son and two daughters. Hurd was the producer of Cameron's The Terminator, Aliens, and The Abyss, and the executive producer of Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Hamilton played the role of Sarah Connor in both Terminator films. Amis played the part of Lizzy Calvert, Rose's granddaughter, in Titanic. Both Cameron (Avatar) and Bigelow (The Hurt Locker) were nominated for the Oscar, the Golden Globe, and the BAFTA Award for Best Director for films released in 2009. Cameron won the Golden Globe, while Bigelow won the Oscar and the BAFTA for Best Director, becoming the first woman to win either.
Cameron became an expert on deep-sea exploration in conjunction with his research and underwater filming for The Abyss (1989) and Titanic (1997). In June 2010, Cameron met in Washington with the EPA to discuss possible solutions to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon (BP) oil spill. Later that week at the All Things Digital Conference, he attracted some notoriety when he stated, "Over the last few weeks I've watched ... and been thinking, 'Those morons don't know what they're doing'." Reportedly, Cameron had offered BP help to plug the oil well, but it declined. The oil spill was eventually stopped using techniques similar to those Cameron recommended.
On March 7, 2012, Cameron took the Deepsea Challenger submersible to the bottom of the New Britain Trench in a five-mile-deep solo dive. On March 26, 2012, Cameron reached the Challenger Deep, the deepest part of the Mariana Trench. He spent more than three hours exploring the ocean floor before returning to the surface. Cameron is the first person to accomplish the trip solo. He was preceded by unmanned dives in 1995 and 2009 and by Jacques Piccard and Don Walsh, who were the first men to reach the bottom of the Mariana Trench aboard the Bathyscaphe Trieste in 1960. Cameron has made a three-dimensional film of his dive. During his dive to the Challenger Deep, the data he collected resulted in interesting new finds in the field of marine biology, including new species of sea cucumber, squid worm, and giant single-celled amoeba, which are exciting finds due to the harshness of the environment.
In 2012, Cameron, his wife and his children adopted a vegan diet. Cameron explains that "By changing what you eat, you will change the entire contract between the human species and the natural world".
When asked what's the best thing an individual can do to fight climate change, Cameron said, "Stop eating animals."
Cameron and his wife are featured in Eating You Alive, a 2016 American documentary. His The Game Changers (2017) showcases vegan athletes and other icons.
Cameron is a member of the NASA Advisory Council and is working on the project to put cameras on an upcoming human mission to Mars. Cameron has also given speeches and raised money for the Mars Society, a non-profit organization lobbying for the colonization of Mars.
Early in 2014, Cameron purchased the Beaufort Vineyard and Estate Winery in Courtenay, British Columbia, at a price of $2.7 million, as well as a number of other businesses in the area, including cattle ranching operations, to pursue his passion for sustainable agribusiness.
In an interview in November 2017, Cameron revealed that he had a hostile altercation with Harvey Weinstein at the 70th Academy Awards in 1998 after Weinstein came to him trying to promote his company Miramax. Cameron, whose friend Guillermo del Toro was unhappy with the way Miramax had treated him on his film Mimic, proceeded in return to "read him chapter and verse about how great I thought he was for the artist", which led to a dispute that almost resulted in an actual fight. Cameron recalled "[almost] hitting him with my Oscar", adding that "[a lot of people] would've preferred I had played through on that one", referring to the recent Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse allegations.
In June 2013, British artist Roger Dean filed a legal action at a court in New York against Cameron. Dean accused Cameron of "wilful and deliberate copying, dissemination and exploitation" of his original images, relating to Cameron's 2009 film Avatar and sought damages of $50m. Dean subsequently lost the case.
Cameron's directorial style has had significant influence within the Hollywood film industry. Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly creator Joss Whedon stated that Cameron's approach to action scenes was influential to those in The Avengers. Whedon also admired Cameron's ability of writing female characters such as Ellen Ripley. He also cited Cameron as "the leader and the teacher and the Yoda". Michael Bay considers Cameron an idol and was convinced by him to use 3D in Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Cameron's approach to 3D also inspired Baz Luhrmann to use it in The Great Gatsby. Other directors that have drawn inspiration from Cameron include Peter Jackson, Neill Blomkamp and Quentin Tarantino.
In 1999, Cameron was labeled selfish and cruel by one collaborator, author Orson Scott Card, who had been hired a decade earlier to work with Cameron on the novelization of The Abyss. Card said the experience was "hell on wheels":
He was very nice to me, because I could afford to walk away. But he made everyone around him miserable, and his unkindness did nothing to improve the film in any way. Nor did it motivate people to work faster or better. And unless he changes his way of working with people, I hope he never directs anything of mine. In fact, now that this is in print, I can fairly guarantee that he will never direct anything of mine. Life is too short to collaborate with selfish, cruel people.
After working with Cameron on Titanic, Kate Winslet decided she would not work with Cameron again unless she earned "a lot of money". She said that Cameron was a nice man, but she found his temper difficult to deal with. In an editorial, the British newspaper The Independent said that Cameron "is a nightmare to work with. Studios have come to fear his habit of straying way over schedule and over budget. He is notorious on set for his uncompromising and dictatorial manner, as well as his flaming temper."
Sam Worthington, who worked with Cameron on Avatar, stated on The Jay Leno Show that Cameron had very high expectations from everyone: he would use a nail gun to nail the film crew's cell phones to a wall above an exit door in retaliation for unwanted ringing during production. Other actors, such as Bill Paxton and Sigourney Weaver, have praised Cameron's perfectionism. Weaver said of Cameron: "He really does want us to risk our lives and limbs for the shot, but he doesn't mind risking his own." Michael Biehn has also praised Cameron, claiming "Jim is a really passionate person. He cares more about his movies than other directors care about their movies", but added "I've never seen him yell at anybody." However, Biehn did claim Cameron is "not real sensitive when it comes to actors and their trailers."
Composer James Horner refused to work with Cameron for a decade following their strained working relationship on 1986's Aliens. They eventually settled their differences, and Horner went on to score both Titanic and Avatar.
In 2014, Cameron was the keynote speaker at the first annual Fame and Philanthropy, a charity fundraiser which raised money for several high-profile celebrity charities. Cameron was one of several guest speakers at the event along with Charlize Theron and Halle Berry.
In a 2015 joint interview, Cameron collaborators Sigourney Weaver and Jamie Lee Curtis commented very positively on him. Curtis stated, "the truth is he can do every other job [than acting]. I'm talking about every single department, from art direction to props to wardrobe to cameras, he knows more than everyone doing the job." Weaver answered "There are very few geniuses in the world, let alone in our business, and he's certainly one of them." She also said, "he's misunderstood in the industry, somewhat. He is so generous to actors."
Cameron did not receive any major mainstream filmmaking awards prior to Titanic. For Titanic, he won several, including Academy Awards for Best Picture (shared with Jon Landau), Best Director and Best Film Editing (shared with Conrad Buff and Richard A. Harris). Cameron is one of the few filmmakers to win three Oscars in a single evening and Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture – Drama and Best Director.
In recognition of "a distinguished career as a Canadian filmmaker", Carleton University, Ottawa, awarded Cameron the honorary degree of Doctor of Fine Arts on June 13, 1998. Cameron accepted the degree in person and gave the Convocation Address.
In 1998, Cameron attended convocation to receive an honorary doctorate of Laws from Ryerson University, Toronto. The university awards its highest honor to those who have made extraordinary contributions in Canada, or internationally.
In 1999, Cameron received the honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from California State University, Fullerton, where he had been a student in the 1970s. He received the degree at the university's annual Commencement exercises that year, where he gave the keynote speech.
In recognition of his contributions to underwater filming and remote vehicle technology, the University of Southampton awarded Cameron the honorary degree of Doctor of the University. Cameron did not attend the Engineering Sciences graduation ceremony in July 2004 where the degree was awarded but instead received it in person at the National Oceanography Centre.
On June 3, 2008, it was announced that he would be inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame. On December 18, 2009, the same day Avatar was released worldwide, Cameron received the 2,396th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. After the release of Avatar, on February 28, 2010, Cameron was also honored with a Visual Effects Society (VES) Lifetime Achievement Award.
For Avatar, Cameron won numerous awards as well, including: Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture – Drama (shared with Jon Landau) and Best Director. He was nominated for three Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director and Best Film Editing (shared with John Refoua and Stephen E. Rivkin). However, Cameron and Avatar lost to his former wife Kathryn Bigelow and her film, The Hurt Locker.
On September 24, 2010, James Cameron was named Number 1 in The 2010 Guardian Film Power 100 list. In a list compiled by the British magazine New Statesman in September 2010, he was listed 30th in the list of "The World's 50 Most Influential Figures 2010".
Cameron has received numerous awards, mainly for Titanic and Avatar.
|Piranha II: The Spawning
|Terminator 2: Judgment Day
|Ghosts of the Abyss
|William Wisher, Jr.1||4|
1 Apart from acting, Wisher Jr. also collaborated with Cameron in writing credits.
2 Biehn's reprise of the role of Kyle Reese was cut from the theatrical release, but was restored in the Special Edition on DVD/Blu-ray.
Cameron's films have recurring themes and subtexts. These include the conflicts between humanity and technology, the dangers of corporate greed, strong female characters, and a strong romance subplot. In almost all films, the main characters usually get into dramatic crisis situations with significant threats to their own life or even the threat of an impending apocalypse. The Abyss dealt with deep sea exploration (shot in an unfinished nuclear reactor filled with water) and Cameron himself became an expert in the field of deep-sea wreckage exploration, exploring the wreckage of the Titanic and the Bismarck. Cameron will return to this theme with The Dive, shooting from a minisub.
|1982||Piranha II: The Spawning||Columbia Pictures|
|1984||The Terminator||Orion Pictures|
|1986||Aliens||20th Century Fox|
|1989||The Abyss||20th Century Fox|
|1991||Terminator 2: Judgment Day||TriStar Pictures|
|1994||True Lies||20th Century Fox / Universal Studios|
|1997||Titanic||Paramount Pictures / 20th Century Fox|
|2009||Avatar||20th Century Fox|
Cameron has written the scripts to all the movies that he has directed. He has contributed to many more projects as a writer, director, and producer, or as a combination of the three.
In addition to works of fiction, Cameron has directed and appeared in several documentaries including Ghosts of the Abyss and Aliens of the Deep. He also contributed to a number of television series including Dark Angel and Entourage.
Critical, public and commercial reception to films James Cameron has directed.
|Film||Rotten Tomatoes||Metacritic||CinemaScore||Budget||Box office|
|Piranha II: The Spawning||6% (16 reviews)||15 (5 reviews)||N/A||$145,786||$389,106|
|The Terminator||100% (58 reviews)||83 (11 reviews)||N/A||$6,400,000||$78,371,200|
|Aliens||98% (65 reviews)||86 (10 reviews)||A||$17,000,000||$131,060,248|
|The Abyss||89% (44 reviews)||62 (14 reviews)||A||$70,000,000||$90,000,098|
|Terminator 2: Judgment Day||93% (74 reviews)||75 (22 reviews)||A+||$94,000,000||$519,843,345|
|True Lies||72% (47 reviews)||63 (17 reviews)||A||$115,000,000||$378,882,411|
|Titanic||88% (182 reviews)||75 (35 reviews)||A+||$200,000,000||$2,186,772,302|
|Ghosts of the Abyss||80% (102 reviews)||67 (24 reviews)||N/A||$13,000,000||$28,780,668|
|Aliens of the Deep||84% (61 reviews)||71 (18 reviews)||N/A||$10,000,000||$12,770,637|
|Avatar||83% (301 reviews)||83 (35 reviews)||A||$237,000,000||$2,787,965,087|
After the success of The Terminator, Cameron was announced as writer and director of a $60 m big-screen adaptation of the comic book classic. But thanks to a tangled web of litigation, studio bankrupticies, and wrangling over screenplay credits, that movie never saw light ... What remains, however, is Cameron's tantalising 47-page Spidey 'scriptment', a compacted screenplay-cum-narrative that mapped out his entire film in brief ... Koepp's first draft is taken often word-for-word from Cameron's story, though later versions were heavily rewritten by numerous screenwriters. Despite this—and much to Cameron's chagrin— Koepp's name is the only one on the screenplay.
The turn happened, Amis Cameron says, when the couple went vegan in 2012 after watching the documentary Forks over Knives.
He drives a Toyota Hybrid that is a whole six years old and recently became vegan, along with his family of five children, aged from five to 23.
Aliens is a 1986 American science fiction action horror film written and directed by James Cameron, produced by Gale Anne Hurd and starring Sigourney Weaver. It is the sequel to the 1979 film Alien and the second installment in the Alien franchise. The film follows Weaver's character Ellen Ripley as she returns to the moon where her crew encountered the hostile Alien creature, this time accompanied by a unit of space marines. Additional roles are played by Carrie Henn, Michael Biehn, Paul Reiser, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein, William Hope, Al Matthews, and Bill Paxton.
Gordon Carroll, David Giler, and Walter Hill of Brandywine Productions, who produced the first film and its later sequels, served as executive producers on Aliens. They were interested in a follow-up to Alien as soon as its 1979 release, but the new management at 20th Century Fox postponed those plans until 1983. Brandywine picked Cameron to write after reading his script for The Terminator; when that film became a hit in 1984, Fox greenlit Aliens with Cameron as director and a budget of approximately $18 million. It was filmed in England at Pinewood Studios and at a decommissioned power plant in Acton, London.
Aliens was released on July 18, 1986 and grossed $180 million worldwide. It was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including a Best Actress nomination for Sigourney Weaver, winning both Sound Effects Editing and Visual Effects. It won eight Saturn Awards (Best Science Fiction Film, Best Actress for Weaver, Best Supporting Actor for Paxton, Best Supporting Actress for Goldstein, and Best Direction and Best Writing for Cameron), and a Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation. Empire magazine voted it the 'Greatest Film Sequel Of All Time'. Aliens was the seventh-highest-grossing film of 1986 in North America.
A sequel, Alien 3, was released in 1992, with Weaver reprising her role as Ripley and Henriksen as Bishop in the film.America's Black Holocaust Museum
America's Black Holocaust Museum (ABHM), located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, was a memorial dedicated to the victims of the Black Holocaust. It was founded in 1988 by James Cameron, the United States' only known survivor of a lynching.
Cameron died in 2006; in 2008, the museum's board of directors announced that the museum would be closed temporarily because of financial problems. The 501c3 nonprofit Dr. James Cameron Legacy Foundation was created in 2012 to continue the legacy and vision of Dr. Cameron. In 2012, the Foundation re-opened ABHM as a virtual museum. In 2016, the Foundation began planning to return the museum to a new home. The new museum, located on the ground floor of the Griot building at 401 W. North Avenue in Milwaukee's historic Bronzeville neighborhood, is scheduled to open in fall 2018.Avatar (2009 film)
Avatar, marketed as James Cameron's Avatar, is a 2009 American epic science fiction film directed, written, produced, and co-edited by James Cameron, and stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, and Sigourney Weaver. The film is set in the mid-22nd century, when humans are colonizing Pandora, a lush habitable moon of a gas giant in the Alpha Centauri star system, in order to mine the mineral unobtanium, a room-temperature superconductor. The expansion of the mining colony threatens the continued existence of a local tribe of Na'vi – a humanoid species indigenous to Pandora. The film's title refers to a genetically engineered Na'vi body operated from the brain of a remotely located human that is used to interact with the natives of Pandora.Development of Avatar began in 1994, when Cameron wrote an 80-page treatment for the film. Filming was supposed to take place after the completion of Cameron's 1997 film Titanic, for a planned release in 1999, but, according to Cameron, the necessary technology was not yet available to achieve his vision of the film. Work on the language of the film's extraterrestrial beings began in 2005, and Cameron began developing the screenplay and fictional universe in early 2006. Avatar was officially budgeted at $237 million. Other estimates put the cost between $280 million and $310 million for production and at $150 million for promotion. The film made extensive use of new motion capture filming techniques, and was released for traditional viewing, 3D viewing (using the RealD 3D, Dolby 3D, XpanD 3D, and IMAX 3D formats), and for "4D" experiences in select South Korean theaters. The stereoscopic filmmaking was touted as a breakthrough in cinematic technology.Avatar premiered in London on December 10, 2009, and was internationally released on December 16 and in the United States and Canada on December 18, to positive critical reviews, with critics highly praising its groundbreaking visual effects. During its theatrical run, the film broke several box office records and became the highest-grossing film of all time, as well as in the United States and Canada, surpassing Cameron's Titanic, which had held those records for twelve years. It also became the first film to gross more than $2 billion and the best-selling film of 2010 in the United States. Avatar was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, and won three, for Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography and Best Visual Effects.
Following the film's success, Cameron signed with 20th Century Fox to produce four sequels: Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 are currently filming, and will be released on December 18, 2020, and December 17, 2021, respectively; subsequent sequels will start shooting as soon as they wrap filming, and will be released in 2024 and 2025. Several cast members are expected to return, including Worthington, Saldana, Lang, and Weaver.Avatar 2
Avatar 2 is an upcoming American epic science fiction film directed, produced, and co-written by James Cameron, and is the second film in the Avatar franchise. Cameron is producing the film with Jon Landau, with Josh Friedman originally announced as his co-writer; it was later announced that Cameron, Friedman, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, and Shane Salerno took a part in the writing process of all sequels before being attributed separate scripts, making the eventual writing credits unclear. Cast members Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Giovanni Ribisi, Joel David Moore, Dileep Rao, CCH Pounder, and Matt Gerald are all reprising their roles from the original film, with Sigourney Weaver returning in a different role.Cameron, who had stated in 2006 that he would like to make sequels to Avatar if it was successful, announced the first two in 2010 following the widespread success of the first film, with Avatar 2 aiming for a 2014 release. However, the subsequent addition of two more sequels, and the necessity to develop new technology in order to film performance capture scenes underwater, a feat never accomplished before in motion capture history, led to significant delays to allow the crew more time to work on the writing, pre-production, and visual effects; it is currently planned for a release on December 18, 2020, exactly eleven years after the American release of the first film, with the following sequels to be released between 2021 and 2025.Preliminary shooting for the film started in Manhattan Beach, California on August 15, 2017, followed by principal photography simultaneously with Avatar 3 in New Zealand on September 25, 2017; Cameron announced that principal photography had wrapped on November 14, 2018.Avatar 3
Avatar 3 is an upcoming American epic science fiction film directed, produced, co-written, and co-edited by James Cameron, scheduled to be released on December 17, 2021. It is the second of four planned sequels to his film Avatar (2009), and will be a follow-up to Avatar 2 (2020), making it the third film in the Avatar franchise. Cameron is producing the film with Jon Landau, with Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver originally announced as his co-writers; it was later announced that Cameron, Jaffa, Silver, Josh Friedman, and Shane Salerno took a part in the writing process of all of the sequels before being assigned to finish the separate scripts, making the eventual writing credits unclear. Cast members Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Sigourney Weaver, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Dileep Rao, and Matt Gerald are all expected to return from the first two films.
Avatar 3 started shooting simultaneously with Avatar 2 on August 15, 2017. Two additional sequels will start shooting as soon as the first two wrap post-production, and are expected to be released in 2024 and 2025, respectively.Ghosts of the Abyss
Ghosts of the Abyss is a 2003 documentary film released by Walt Disney Pictures and Walden Media. It was directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker James Cameron after his 1997 Oscar-winning film Titanic. During August and September 2001, Cameron and a group of scientists staged an expedition to the wreck of the RMS Titanic, and dived in Russian deep-submersibles to obtain more detailed images than anyone had before. With the help of two small, purpose-built remotely operated vehicles, nicknamed "Jake" and "Elwood", the audience too can see inside the Titanic, and with the help of CGI, audiences can view the ship's original appearance superimposed on the deep-dive images.
Also along for the ride Cameron invited his friend, actor Bill Paxton, who played Brock Lovett in the 1997 film. Paxton narrates the event through his eyes. The film premiered for IMAX 3D and was nominated for a BFCA award for Best Documentary. The submersibles Mir 1 and Mir 2 carried the filming team on 12 dives.The film is also known as Titanic 3D: Ghosts of the Abyss.James Cameron (activist)
James Cameron (February 25, 1914 – June 11, 2006) was an American civil rights activist. In the 1940s, he founded three chapters of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in Indiana. He also served as Indiana's State Director of the Office of Civil Liberties from 1942 to 1950.
In the 1950s he moved with his family to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he continued as an activist and started speaking on African-American history. In 1988 he founded America's Black Holocaust Museum in the city, devoted to African-American history from slavery to the present.
At his death, Cameron was the only known survivor in the United States of a lynching attempt, which occurred when he was a 16-year-old suspect in a murder/robbery case in Marion, Indiana; two older teenagers were killed by the mob, a spectacle of thousands.James Cameron filmography
James Cameron is a Canadian director, screenwriter, and producer who has had an extensive career in film and television. Cameron's debut was the 1978 science fiction short Xenogenesis, which he directed, wrote and produced. In the early part of his career, he did various technical jobs such as special visual effects producer, set dresser assistant, matte artist, and photographer. His feature directorial debut was the 1982 release Piranha II: The Spawning. The next film he directed was the science fiction action thriller The Terminator (1984). It starred Arnold Schwarzenegger as the titular cyborg assassin, and was Cameron's breakthrough feature. In 1986, he directed and wrote the science fiction action sequel Aliens starring Sigourney Weaver. He followed this by directing another science fiction film The Abyss (1989). In 1991, Cameron directed the sequel to The Terminator, Terminator 2: Judgment Day (with Schwarzenegger reprising his role), and also executive produced the action crime film Point Break. Three years later he directed a third Schwarzenegger-starring action film True Lies (1994).In 1997, Cameron directed, wrote, and produced the epic romantic disaster film Titanic which grossed over $1.84 billion at the worldwide box-office and became the highest grossing of all time. He received the Academy Award for Best Director, the Academy Award for Best Film Editing, and shared the Academy Award for Best Picture with the other producers. It had a total of 14 Oscar nominations (tying the record set by the 1950 drama All About Eve) and won 11 (tying the record set by the 1959 epic historical drama Ben-Hur). Cameron also won the Golden Globe Award for Best Director and shared the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Drama with the other producers. He followed this by directing, and producing two underwater documentaries: Ghosts of the Abyss (2003), and Aliens of the Deep (2005). He returned to directing features in 2009 with the 3D science fiction film Avatar. It grossed over $2.78 billion at the worldwide box-office and became the highest grossing of all time surpassing Titanic. The film still holds this record as of 2018. Avatar was nominated for nine Academy Awards and won three in technical categories. Cameron also earned a second Golden Globe Award for Best Director, and Best Motion Picture – Drama. He followed this by executive producing two 3D films, Sanctum (2011) and Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away (2012), as well as the documentary Deepsea Challenge 3D (2014).
Cameron made his television debut in 1998 playing himself in the sitcom Mad About You. Two years later he executive produced the science fiction television series Dark Angel (2000) starring Jessica Alba. In 2005, he appeared in two documentaries about the sinking of the RMS Titanic: Last Mysteries of the Titanic, and Tony Robinson's Titanic Adventure. He also made appearances as himself on the comedy-drama television series Entourage that same year. Cameron followed this by executive producing two biblical documentaries, The Exodus Decoded (2006) and Lost Tomb of Jesus (2007). He executive produced and appeared in a third Titanic related documentary, Titanic: Final Word with James Cameron, in 2012. Two years later, Cameron executive produced the climate change documentary television series Years of Living Dangerously (2014) which received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series.Lightstorm Entertainment
Lightstorm Entertainment is an American production company founded in 1990 by filmmaker James Cameron and producer Lawrence Kasanoff. It is best known for producing Cameron's films Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Titanic, and most recently Avatar; Cameron has employed other filmmakers to produce and direct films under the Lightstorm banner.
The company's logo depicts a bowman using a lightning bolt as an arrow.Strange Days (film)
Strange Days is a 1995 American science fiction thriller film directed by Kathryn Bigelow, written by James Cameron and Jay Cocks, and produced by Cameron and Steven-Charles Jaffe. It stars Ralph Fiennes, Angela Bassett, Juliette Lewis, and Tom Sizemore. Set in the last two days of 1999, the film follows the story of a black marketeer of SQUID discs, recordings that allow a user to experience the recorder's memories and physical sensations, as he attempts to uncover the truth behind the murder of a prostitute.
Blending science fiction with film noir conventions, Strange Days explores themes such as racism, abuse of power, rape, and voyeurism. Although the story was conceived by Cameron around 1986, Bigelow found inspiration after incidents such as the Lorena Bobbitt trial and the 1992 Los Angeles riots that followed the Rodney King verdict. The film was shot entirely in the Greater Los Angeles Area over a period of 77 nights. The film's SQUID scenes, which offer a point-of-view shot (POV), required multi-faceted cameras and considerable technical preparation.
Strange Days was a commercial failure and almost derailed Bigelow's career, making little more than a sixth of its $42 million production cost. Upon release, the film polarized film critics; some reviewers praised its gritty atmosphere and the performances by Fiennes and Bassett, while others criticized it for failing to comment on its violence. Nevertheless, the film's critical standing has improved over the years, with many fans feeling that the film has been overlooked by a casual mass audience and misguided critics. At the 22nd Saturn Awards, Bassett won Best Actress and Bigelow became the first woman to win the Best Director award.Suzy Amis Cameron
Susan Elizabeth Amis Cameron (born January 5, 1962) is an American environmental advocate, a former actress, and a former model.Terminator (franchise)
The Terminator series is an American science-fiction franchise created by James Cameron and Gale Anne Hurd. The franchise encompasses a series of films, comics, novels, and additional media concerning battles between Skynet's synthetic intelligent machine network, and John Connor's Resistance forces and the rest of the human race. Skynet's most well-known products in its genocidal goals are the various terminator models, such as the T-800 (Model 101), who was portrayed by Arnold Schwarzenegger from the original Terminator film in 1984, and similar units he also portrayed in the later films. By 2010, the franchise has generated $3 billion in revenue.Terminator 6
Terminator 6 is an upcoming 2019 American science fiction action film directed by Tim Miller with a screenplay written by David S. Goyer. The film's story was conceived by Miller, series co-creator James Cameron and David Ellison, with the latter two serving as producers alongside Dana Goldberg. It will be the sixth installment in the Terminator franchise and serves as a direct sequel to The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgment Day, disregarding the subsequent films and The Sarah Connor Chronicles television series as occurring in alternate timelines. The film will star Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Mackenzie Davis, Gabriel Luna, Natalia Reyes, and Diego Boneta. The film will be distributed by Paramount Pictures domestically and by 20th Century Fox in other territories, and is scheduled to be released on November 1, 2019.The Abyss
The Abyss is a 1989 American science fiction film written and directed by James Cameron, starring Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, and Michael Biehn. When an American submarine sinks in the Caribbean, the U.S. search and recovery team works with an oil platform crew, racing against Russian vessels to recover the boat. Deep in the ocean, they encounter something unexpected. The film was released on August 9, 1989, and grossed $90 million. It won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects and was nominated for three more Academy awards.The Terminator
The Terminator is a 1984 American science fiction film directed by James Cameron. It stars Arnold Schwarzenegger as the Terminator, a cyborg assassin sent back in time from 2029 to 1984 to kill Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton), whose son will one day become a savior against machines in a post-apocalyptic future. Michael Biehn plays Kyle Reese, a soldier from the future sent back in time to protect Connor. The screenplay is credited to Cameron and producer Gale Anne Hurd, while co-writer William Wisher Jr. received a credit for additional dialogue. Executive producers John Daly and Derek Gibson of Hemdale Film Corporation were instrumental in the film's financing and production.The Terminator topped the United States box office for two weeks and helped launch Cameron's film career and solidify Schwarzenegger's. It received critical acclaim, with many praising its pacing, action scenes and Schwarzenegger's performance. Its success led to a franchise consisting of four sequels (Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Terminator Salvation and Terminator Genisys), a television series, comic books, novels and video games. In 2008, The Terminator was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry as "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".Titanic (1997 film)
Titanic is a 1997 American epic romance and disaster film directed, written, co-produced and co-edited by James Cameron. A fictionalized account of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, it stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet as members of different social classes who fall in love aboard the ship during its ill-fated maiden voyage.
Cameron's inspiration for the film came from his fascination with shipwrecks; he felt a love story interspersed with the human loss would be essential to convey the emotional impact of the disaster. Production began in 1995, when Cameron shot footage of the actual Titanic wreck. The modern scenes on the research vessel were shot on board the Akademik Mstislav Keldysh, which Cameron had used as a base when filming the wreck. Scale models, computer-generated imagery, and a reconstruction of the Titanic built at Baja Studios, at Playas de Rosarito in Baja California were used to re-create the sinking. The film was partially funded by Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox; the former handled distribution in North America while Fox released the film internationally. It was the most expensive film ever made at the time, with a production budget of $200 million.
Upon its release on December 19, 1997, Titanic achieved critical and commercial success. Nominated for 14 Academy Awards, it tied All About Eve (1950) for the most Oscar nominations, and won 11, including the awards for Best Picture and Best Director, tying Ben-Hur (1959) for the most Oscars won by a single film. With an initial worldwide gross of over $1.84 billion, Titanic was the first film to reach the billion-dollar mark. It remained the highest-grossing film of all time until Cameron's Avatar surpassed it in 2010. A 3D version of Titanic, released on April 4, 2012, to commemorate the centennial of the sinking, earned it an additional $343.6 million worldwide, pushing the film's worldwide total to $2.18 billion and making it the second film to gross more than $2 billion worldwide (after Avatar). In 2017, the film was re-released for its 20th anniversary and was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.True Lies
True Lies is a 1994 American action film written, directed and co-produced by James Cameron. It stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold, Art Malik, Tia Carrere, Bill Paxton, Eliza Dushku, Grant Heslov and Charlton Heston. It is a remake of the 1991 French comedy film La Totale! The film follows U.S. government agent Harry Tasker (Schwarzenegger), who struggles to balance his life as a spy with his familial duties.
True Lies was the first Lightstorm Entertainment project to be distributed under Cameron's multimillion-dollar production deal with 20th Century Fox, as well as the first major production for the visual effects company Digital Domain, which was co-founded by Cameron.
For her performance, Curtis won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy and the Saturn Award for Best Actress, while Cameron won the Saturn Award for Best Director. The film ultimately grossed $378 million worldwide at the box-office and was also nominated at the Academy Awards and BAFTAs in the Best Visual Effect category, and also for seven Saturn Awards.