‘Avatar’ news, a weekend roundup

Nov. 28, 2009 | 9:54 p.m.

“AVATAR” COUNTDOWN: 21 DAYS

We’re all still stuffed with turkey so we continue the marathon countdown coverage of “Avatar” today with a slightly relaxed weekend post that look around the Internet to peruse other early coverage of the James Cameron sci-fi epic, which hits theaters Dec. 18.

Defamer quotes a source who says “Avatar” will make us all puke: “I watch a lot of movies, and am especially obsessed with watching horrible films with inflated budgets.  I was delighted to find that Avatar didn’t disappoint in the absolutely horrible fetishizing of azure humanoids that James Cameron has obviously been drawing on the back covers of his notebooks since middle school and secretly getting off to in the gym locker room. The new technology they’ve been using to eliminate the headaches and sickness conducive to old 3D tech has not been used properly in the action scenes throughout Avatar.  The problem is with cutting in between 3D focal points and perspective — the mind cannot adjust to it without a buffer — thus, Avatar is literally vomit inducing.” Read the rest.

Parade magazine listens to Sigourney Weaver discuss family history and aging in Hollywood: “I had a very strong mother,” Weaver says. “She could have circled the planet in a sailboat by herself. When she was little, she had braces on her legs and managed to become a fantastic athlete. She qualified for Wimbledon when she was 16. My mother was such a competitor — an early jogger in New York City. When I was a kid, she used to run up FDR Drive, and cars would slow down, with people going, ‘Lady, are you OK? Is someone chasing you?’ I feel like it’s been bred into me that you take care of yourself and stay active. You have to. When my mother died at 94, we found out that she’d actually lied about her age by one year,” Weaver says, smiling. “I don’t know why that one year would have made a difference!” She raises her eyebrows. “I see actresses who I know are much older than I am, who now say they’re 60. It’s like — whatever, you know? I just can’t be bothered. People are going to hire me because I’m Sigourney, not because I’m five years older or younger.” Read the rest (There’s also a photo gallery).

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Reuters reports more on the “Avatar” budget rumors: 20th Century Fox will make a profit with James Cameron’s 3D sci-fi epic “Avatar,” Fox Filmed Entertainment chairman Jim Gianopulos said in an interview, and dismissed reports the movie cost $500 million as “ridiculous.” Blending computer-generated characters and live actors, “Avatar” tells the story of a former Marine who infiltrates the native Na’vi people on a faraway planet to help corporations extract a mineral, but ends up fighting for the alien race. It will be released worldwide in the competitive holiday season. Media reports have estimated the bill for the movie, including marketing costs, at about $500 million, and some have argued it could be hard for Fox, owned by media conglomerate News Corp, to make a profit. “That’s a ridiculous number,” Gianopulos told Reuters on Monday during a visit to Greece. “It has actually no relationship to the actual cost of the movie.” Read the rest.

The San Bernardino Sun digs into the dirt of Pandora: When film director James Cameron needed help to create plant life for the fictional planet in his new film “Avatar,” he looked to UC Riverside for help. Enter Jodie Holt, professor of plant physiology, who stepped in to return the iconic director’s call. For months, Holt worked with film producers and actors to help make the film a reality, specifically serving as a consultant to help create plant life for the fictional planet of Pandora — a land toxic to humans yet it supports vegetation. Not long after the initial call, Holt found herself on the “Avatar” set… Read the rest.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the last-minute hurried fixes to the film. The article was a week ago, but we imagine that there may still be a few touches remaining.  Producer Jon Landau said that crews were working “24-8″ to get scenes done. Seemingly, each extra day and each extra shot are putting more costs on the already expensive venture. Final edits and additions include color timing, scoring and special effects by Weta Workshop. Gianopulos said “it’s in the hectic Bones3_GamerGrease-BTS_0009 last days of postproduction typical of any film of this size, but it’s on schedule and preparing for its worldwide release.”  Read the rest.

/Film, among others, have been talking a bit about Thursday’s episode of Fox’s “Bones,” which will apparently be a huge promo for “Avatar.”  Starring Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz, with Joel David Moore, (right) the episode — titled “The Gamer and the Grease” — has the duo investigating the death of a competitive gamer, and seems as if it will go beyond the “drinking a Pepsi” or “using a Sony Vaio laptop” in a scene with product placement. In the clip, they seem to be at a convention hyping the movie, and mention it often. Around the Web, many are asking is it just timely writing or paid-for programming, and does it ruin the episode? Read the rest (and the reactions) …

Photos: Sigourney Weaver (Dr. Grace Augustine) and Sam Worthington (Jake Sully) in “Avatar.”  Credit: Mark Fellman / 20th Century Fox. Jeffersonian intern Colin Fisher (Joel David Moore) camps out for tickets to the premiere of the new James Cameron film “Avatar.” Credit: Fox

RECENT AND RELATED

Txantstewä Fpìlfya — that’s how you say Hero Complex in Na’vi

“Avatar” as innovator: “We were in new territory … there was no road” 

Jim Cameron, cinema prophet? “Moving a mountain is nothing” 

Avatar: The Game will follow its own path through the alien jungle

Sam Worthington looks for the humanity of “Avatar”: “I don’t want to be a cartoon”

Giovanni Ribisi loves Jim Cameron

James Cameron on “Avatar”: Like “Matrix,” it opens doorways

“Avatar” star Zoe Saldana says the movie will match the hype: “This is big”

Welcome to the jungle: Mixed reaction to “Avatar” trailer

VIDEO: “Avatar” interviews with Sigourney Weaver and Jon Landau

Peter Jackson: Movie fans are fed up with the lack of original ideas 
 

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Comments


One Response to ‘Avatar’ news, a weekend roundup

  1. Brian Barker says:

    And before "Avatar" and "Star Trek" there was Bill Shatner speaking Esperanto, in the film called "Incubus".
    See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F77k6SQX7iQ&fe
    As an Esperanto speaker I found it terrifying! His Esperanto pronunciation that is, not the film.
    Your readers may be interested in http://www.lernu.net :)

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