James Cameron is an opinionated guy, and he’s got enough “Eff You” money to bathe in — Scrooge McDuck style. Most of his public declarations about the quality of film relate to 3D. For instance, The Hurt Locker “would have been better in 3D.” And Piranha 3D “cheapens the medium.”
But Cameron has other interests. The director spent the decade after Titanic filming underseas documentaries and produced the underwater cavern thriller Sanctum 3D (due February 4th). As such, he bristles at the idea of a film based on the board game Battleship:
“We have a story crisis. Now they want to make the Battleship game into a film. This is pure desperation.”
Hit the jump for Cameron’s elaboration.
“Everyone in Hollywood knows how important it is that a film is a brand before it hit theaters. If a brand has been around, Harry Potter for example, or Spider-Man, you are light years ahead. And there lies the problem. Because unfortunately these franchises are become more ridiculous. Battleship. This degrades the cinema.”
I can see where Cameron’s coming from. Battleship is indeed a brand, and not a story waiting to be told.
But in a way, that vapid quality is exciting. As long as Universal can stick the name Battleship on the poster, Jon and Erich Hoeber (Red) are permitted to write what is effectively an original screenplay about a naval battle… with aliens. Maybe I’m naive, but I’m not ready to write Battleship off so quickly, more than a year before its May 8, 2012 release.
In addition to Sanctum, Cameron is producing Guillermo del Toro’s At the Mountains of Madness adaptation and a Fantastic Voyage remake. His next directorial project is Avatar 2 and Avatar 3, due in December 2014 and December 2015.