James Cameron, director for the all-time great SciFi blockbuster, smash Avatar, is now helping to direct the search for life on Mars. The AP reports that Cameron has successfully lobbied Charles Bolden, NASA'a administrator, to include a special 3-D camera atop Mars rover "Curiosity."
The inclusion of a 3-D camera was planned years ago, but was scrapped from the project in 2007 as Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) cut-back due to budget and schedule overruns. Cameron, however, met with Bolden in January, and convinced him that a 3-D camera would gain public interest and help people connect with NASA'a mission to Mars.
According to the Pasadena Star News, the Canadian born director said, "He [Bolden] actually was really open to the idea. Our first meeting went very well." despite another camera, without 3-D technology, having already been built and delivered to JPL earlier this month.
The Mars mission, which is set to leave the launching pad some time in 2011, is now in a race against time to complete the camera before liftoff.
The Avatar creator added, It's a very ambitious mission. It's a very exciting mission. [The scientists are] going to answer a lot of really important questions about the previous and potential future habitability of Mars."Casey Kazan