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Avatar – Gateway to a new world

By December 5, 2009Newswires

Avatar – Gateway to a new world
James Cameron`s long-awaited 3D science-fiction epic Avatar opens this month. Geoffrey Macnab recounts the Titanic director`s long struggle to make it, and asks whether the film will revolutionise cinema

At the Las Vegas trade event ShoWest in 2005, the film directors James Cameron, George Lucas, Robert Zemeckis, Robert Rodriguez and Randal Kleiser all appeared on stage together in 3D specs. These titans of the US film industry were there to herald what they were confidently predicting would be the next big revolution in cinema – a revolution that might even have the transformative powers of the birth of the talkie in Hollywood in the late 1920s… namely 3D.

Nearly five years on, that revolution may at last be in sight. This month sees the release of James Cameron`s Avatar, the movie that advance hype suggests is supposed to change our filmgoing experience forever. Fourteen years in the making, boasting almost 3,000 effects shots and costing (it has been claimed in some quarters) as much as $300m, the film – the publicity tells us – will take us "to a spectacular world beyond our imagination". Avatar is being billed by Fox as "a fully immersive cinematic experience of a new kind, where the revolutionary technology invented to make the film disappears into the emotion of the characters and the sweep of the story".

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