Avatar did a lot of things. It broke all sorts of box office records, sparked an onslaught of 3D movies, and brought greater awareness to the plot of Dances with Wolves, among other things. Now, you can add one more accomplishment to its resume – killing James Cameron’s non-Avatar film career.
Cameron, who’s recently been spending most of his time in deep-sea submersibles, tells the New York Times that he simply doesn’t have time for anything else:
“I’m in the Avatar business. Period. That’s it. I’m making Avatar 2, Avatar 3, maybe Avatar 4, and I’m not going to produce other people’s movies for them. I’m not interested in taking scripts. And that all sounds I suppose a little bit restricted, but the point is I think within the Avatar landscape I can say everything I need to say that I think needs to be said, in terms of the state of the world and what I think we need to be doing about it.”
It might sound surprising that Cameron has decided to abandon all non-Avatar projects (sorry, Battle Angel fans), but when you look at his career it’s not much of a shock. He’s always been selective with his work, and in fact since his first hit, 1984′s The Terminator, he’s only directed six non-documentary films. At that rate, finishing his vision of the complete Avatar saga could realistically lead the 57-year old director into retirement (the Avatar sequels are supposedly set to be released during Christmas 2014 and 2015, but I’ll believe it when I see it).
Of course, Cameron can do whatever he wants at this point, but it’ll be interesting to see how much demand there will be from audiences for multiple Avatar sequels. The oh-my-god-3D-is-amazing ship has largely sailed, and nobody really seems to be clamoring for a return visit to Pandora at this point. However, the underwater angle that the upcoming films will take certainly have promise (who better than Cameron to take on the sea?), and Cameron tends to make his films count, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.