March 7th, 2010
07:11 PM ET

James Cameron: Surprised by success of 'Avatar'

James Cameron, who donned a blue pocket square to match his wife's gown, said he never dreamed "Avatar" would make such a splash.

"We thought we were going to make some money, but not nearly as much as we did," he said.

As for the buzz about Cameron and his ex-wife, Kathryn Bigelow, going head to head, he said he couldn't be more proud of what she has accomplished.

Filed under: Avatar • movies • Oscars 2010
March 5th, 2010
05:11 PM ET

Sacha Baron Cohen to Oscar: I'm outta here

The Motion Picture Academy is confirming Sacha Baron Cohen has dropped out as an Oscar presenter.

He was supposed to take part in an "Avatar" sketch with Ben Stiller, playing a female Na'vi.   Stiller reportedly was going to "translate" what Cohen was saying in Na'vi.  The Cohen avatar reportedly would then reveal she was pregnant with director James Cameron's love child.

Sounds pretty funny to me, but the Academy says the bit "did not come to fruition" (maybe "gestation" would have been a better word). 


March 5th, 2010
08:44 AM ET

Oscar's 'new math': How best picture will be picked

Oscar oddsmakers have "The Hurt Locker" and "Avatar" in a virtual dead heat for best picture.  So it's a sure bet that one of them will win on Sunday, right?

Not necessarily.

Voting for best picture – and tabulating those votes – isn't a simple case of majority rule.  For one thing, with 10 nominees this year, it's more likely than ever that no film will receive 50 percent-plus-one of the vote: If "Avatar" and "Hurt Locker" are as close as believed, even if the other eight nominees combined drew, say, just 15 percent of the votes, that likely would be enough to keep either of the favorites from reaching 50 percent.

In the past, that wouldn't have mattered: the top vote-getter would take the trophy, end of story.


February 16th, 2010
11:33 AM ET

Producer says James Cameron to write 'Avatar' novel

It was only a matter of time.

Think about a) how many fans have become completely absorbed in James Cameron's fictional world, some to the point of being depressed when the movie ends and b) how much money that movie has made.

The "Avatar" novel is a pretty clear next move, and it will mark James Cameron's debut as a novelist.


Filed under: Avatar • movies
February 3rd, 2010
03:45 PM ET

'Avatar' is No. 1 movie of all time

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It was only a matter of time - 47 days, to be precise.

According to the box office tally site, "Avatar" is now the highest-grossing movie of all time domestically. The James Cameron film's business now stands at $601.1 million, ahead of the $600.8 million Cameron's "Titanic" did back in 1997-98.

Moreover, "Titanic" took 252 days to top out; "Avatar," which has been the biggest movie in the country since its mid-December release, is still No. 1 and shows little sign of flagging (and those nine Oscar nominations won't hurt).


January 27th, 2010
07:18 PM ET

Putting 'Avatar' in per$pective

As we all know, "Avatar" is making ridiculous amounts of money: it just became the all-time worldwide box office champ, and appears poised to pass "Titanic" for the domestic crown within a couple of weeks.  But what does that mean?  I've given it some thought, and consulted and other resources, and here's some perspective.  (Keep in mind that this would be a lot simpler if theaters and studios released data on tickets sold, but then we wouldn't have as many of these lovely debates.)

Certainly, when you adjust for inflation, "Avatar" is knocked down a few pegs: it's "only" 26th all-time in domestic ticket sales.  "Gone With The Wind" leads that chart, with "Titanic" in sixth place.  "Avatar" would have to boost its current $558 million in grosses to $957 million to top "Titanic" on that chart... and to surpass "GWTW," a mind-numbing $1.5 billion.

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