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Cameron talks Avatar

While his TERMINATOR series trundles onward without him, director James Cameron is tirelessly working on his megabudget sci-fi epic AVATAR.

While he's still not spilling much about the story itself or the world he created for it, Cameron does love to discuss the new technology he's constructed for this (and future) projects. And as has been mentioned, his spiffy new 3-D ultra-camera sounds like it has the potential to drastically change filmmaking. "The way we developed the performance-capture workflow on 'Avatar" is we have our virtual camera, which allows me, in real time, to hold a camera -- it's really a monitor -- in my hands and point it at the actors and see them as their CG characters," Cameron said.

"Once we've laid down a take, the take exists in the digital asset management system. It can be accessed at any time. Long after the actors have gone home, I'm still out there with the virtual camera, shooting coverage on the scene. I just have to play the take back. I can do the close-up, the wide shot ... I can even move them around on a limited basis. We relight it. We do all kinds of things."

It remains to be seen how convincing these "synthespians" will appear when digitally projected on theater screens, but it does have the spooky underlying implication that human actors may not be entirely necessary for the duration of filming at some point in the future. Cameron does insist that the story comes first, although the finished product is expected to be approximately 60% CGI and 40% live-action. Read more about his crazy next-gen tech RIGHT HERE.

The movie, which will be arrives in December 2009 and involves a disabled war veteran who travels to an alien world and gets into a spot of trouble with the locals.
Extra Tidbit: The movie reportedly features sexy blue alien chicks with prehensile tails. I'd pay to see that even if Albert Pyun directed it.

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