I have now paid to see Avatar 3 times; I likely won't even watch AinW....well, EVER.
I don't know of any movie actor who wouldn't jump at the change to work with Tim
wonder if his special effects team is making any overtures to Cameron on new CGI technology.
Burton: It just came down to things in technology that I liked or didn't like. For instance, I'm not a big fan at the moment for mo-cap stuff because I just don't like it personally. A lot of people have used it very successfully, but it's personally not a thing that I like. That's why I decided to go with pure animation for some of the characters, and then for some, live-action, rather than it just being animation or live-action " to blur the lines a little bit. With some of our characters, we're just doing some manipulation with it, so it's their real performance, real faces, real heads, real bodies, everything, but just manipulate it so that it's kind of a weirder crossover into what Wonderland is. It just comes down to sort of things that you like or don't like, and I just find with animation, you're able to achieve more reality by just doing the animation than maybe doing mo-cap stuff. Although it's getting better, I know that; they're doing really good things with it. But it's just a personal choice to do something that way.
Not widely whispered about, but ILM was called in to produce the final special effects on Avatar (could be why the first trailers were not even close to as good as the film):
One benefit for the entire film industry of having ILM step in to help out on "Avatar" may be that in working on the project, Knoll and his team came up with a new way to completely computer-generate large-scale, close-up explosions.
Until now, big fiery explosions in CGI-heavy films have been shot with live camera and then had visual effects added to them. But Knoll said that because of some of the limitation of matching Cameron's templates for "Avatar," there was no practical way to meet the movie's explosive needs with live-action.
"We've done CG explosions in the past," Knoll said, "but never with this level of realism, and never this close up."
Fortunately, ILM had pioneered the rendering of the visual movement of fluids in films like "Poseidon" and "Pirates of the Caribbean," and Knoll knew that the shape and movement dynamics of an explosion were similar to that of water.
"The same underlying engine is being used on this," Knoll said. "The motion of the underlying gas is similar to the motion of fluids. The medium is relatively uncompressable. So when there's movement of the medium, it can't change volume real dramatically. So if you push on one side, something has to push on the other side."
That meant that ILM could take the graphics engine it had created for fluid shots in the previous films and apply the same basic technology for the explosions in "Avatar." Though there are clearly some major differences between fluid and big fire - notably that as fuel burns, fire expands, and then retracts when the fuel goes away, the technique was similar enough that the technology could be adapted to the needs of "Avatar."
It took director James Cameron’s Titanic 44 days to reach the $300 million mark. Twelve years later, Cameron’s Avatar has reached that same milestone nearly three times faster, in just its 15th day of release. The 3-D epic grossed an estimated $25 million on New Years Day, pushing the film’s domestic total to $308.8 million. If that pace holds, expect the film to shatter Spider-Man’s $45 million record for the biggest ever third weekend in theaters
It's challenge after breaking the Spider-Man record is going to be sustainability. I think it will enjoy multiple viewings, driving up its' box office into the stratosphere. I plan to see it two more times. This afternoon we'll be seeing the weekend box office estimates.
One of the really interesting things about Avatar is the way it appeals to women as much, if not more than, it appeals to men. A big part of why, unlike a lot of science fiction, it works so well for the fairer sex is James Cameron's instinct for emotional entanglements. Girls need a good love story almost as much as guys need a good explosion and Avatar managed to deliver both. If the sequel is going to hold on to the franchise's female audience they'll need to keep that emotion-driven component. If Cameron goes the prequel route, working in a new romance is easy, but if he decides to stick with Jake and Neytiri things get more difficult. With Jake and Neytiri married their future relationship is bound to far less romance novel and more domestic, and it's not like Avatar 2 can use the Sex and the City method by sending Neytiri shoe shopping. Cameron's best bet to hang on to his female audience could be substituting kids for Fabio-style romance. I hear girls like babies in movies almost as much as I like bullets. What happens when a human/alien hybrid mates with an uncomfortably sexy alien? Will the kids have four fingers or five? What do the Na'vi use for diapers? The answers may be in Avatar 2.