Legendary Canadian director and three-time Academy Award winner, James Cameron, will direct his first film since his 1997 Titanic. The $200 million science fiction film, Avatar, tells the story of a band of humans battling for survival with the inhabitants of a distant planet. Cameron will be collaborating with Peter Jackson, director of Lord of the Rings trilogy.
The 52-year-old director of the Terminator series and Alien said he had conceived the project 11 years ago but had been waiting for technological advancements that will enable him to bring his vision to the big screen.
"I've wanted to do it since then, but sort of shoved it in the back of the pic," Cameron told Daily Variety on Tuesday.
The project was given the green light by Fox studios earlier this week.
Cameron started in the film industry as a screenwriter, then moved into art direction and effects for films such as Battle Beyond the Stars and Escape from New York. Working with producer Roger Corman, Cameron landed his first directorial job in 1981 for the film Piranha II: The Spawning, shot at Grand Cayman Island for the underwater diving sequences and in Rome, Italy for most of the interior scenes. He was originally hired as the special effects director (and his hand in story-writing can be suspected under the H. A. Milton pseudonym on the original script), and took over the direction when the original director left.