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Avatar Budget, Up in the Air Tweet Chart, Pattinson vs. Kidman, Finke Attacks, Indie Bloodbath Redux

James Cameron's Avatar did not cost $500 million. First of all, the thing was in R & D for years. The negative cost is $300 to 400 million, but no one knows for sure. If you add worldwide marketing to it, maybe it creeps up to $500 million, because it's a huge movie that Fox has already spent a lot to flog, with World Series spots, Avatar Day, Comic-Con and Tokyo Film Fest footage etc. Online folks went nuts over this Michael Cieply NYT story which threw out an "approaching $500 million" figure. Loved this response from @ColeAbaius: "Not what I heard. insider claims that AVATAR will end up at $29 Trillion. And it was actually shot in space."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 10, 2009 1:26 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Avatar Behind-the-Scenes Featurette

As more finished footage becomes available for James Cameron's Avatar---which is about 75% CG--Fox is releasing more material in advance of the December 18 release.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 29, 2009 7:20 AM
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  • 0 Comments

New Avatar Trailer is Up

I know there are a lot of Avatar naysayers out there but when the hairs rise on the back of my neck I know there's something real going on. I felt it with Twilight and I feel it with this latest Avatar trailer which went up on Yahoo at 10 am PST (video on jump).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 29, 2009 5:18 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Avatar's Cameron, Shutter Island's Lehane and Transformers' Murphy Talk, Mirren Wins Rome

Avatar's Cameron, Shutter Island's Lehane and Transformers' Murphy Talk, Mirren Wins Rome
All the hours James Cameron spent with The New Yorker's Dana Goodyear did not yield the results the director must have hoped for. The 11,000-word profile takes the easy angle on the director--he's an asshole control freak who eats his crew for breakfast. I am so tired of this cliche. The piece digs into many delicious details of the director's career and hard work on Avatar. (And Fox is still trying to hold the media to a fake mid-200-million figure--it's far more.) But while Cameron is certainly demanding and is putting Fox through the ringer yet again, he puts his ass on the line each time.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 26, 2009 12:52 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Avatar Watch: Action Figures, Concept Art, Novel

While James Cameron and the VFX wizards at Weta Digital in Wellywood are trying to finish the last big effects sequences in Avatar--which is set for December 18 release--Cameron is also working on many of the ancillary marketing and licensing sidelines that will help sell this pricey 3-D movie. (The official sticker price is $237 million, but we can safely assume that that figure is 1) low and 2) counting.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 6, 2009 6:52 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Empire Covers Avatar

The last wide-circulation English-language movie magazine standing is published in the UK: Empire. So that's where you go for your early Avatar cover story .
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 28, 2009 6:08 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Avatar Day

James Cameron himself wasn't happy that the Avatar online trailer preceded the Avatar Day IMAX 3-D screenings on Friday. The reason that happened, according to Fox, is that the trailer went out at the same time as the first 10 AM screenings in New Zealand Tokyo on the other side of the world. It was a synchronous global release. The Apple site was so overwhelmed with clicks that it crashed at first. More than 4 million people streamed the Avatar trailer on that first day, breaking the prior record of 1.7 million set by Star Trek. So that was good news for Fox. Curiosity was high.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 22, 2009 6:40 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Avatar Trailer Update

The response to the Avatar teaser trailer that Fox released Thursday was mixed.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 20, 2009 10:14 AM
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  • 8 Comments

Avatar Week: Photo Gallery

I'm obsessed with Avatar. (The movies of James Cameron are moving inexorably up my flickchart.) The question for me is whether Cameron's ambitious mix of 3-D live-action and performance capture --which cost Fox way more than $200 million-- breaks out beyond the Comic-Con faithful. It feels very sci-fi thriller, which is fine for District 9. But Cameron knows how to reach a wide audience. Avatar is also a romance set on the exotic planet Pandora.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 20, 2009 2:12 AM
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  • 8 Comments

Avatar Day, Sony Acquires Parnassus, Tarantino, Screwball Ladies

We've been tracking news that Sony Pictures Classics would release The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus this fall. But as the NY-based specialty division rigorously refuses to confirm these talks, the rumors spread around the internet until Variety figured out a way to write the story so that Sony Worldwide Acquisitions Group "is in advanced talks" to acquire the movie for SPC to release. It's easy to run a rumor, harder to run it down.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 13, 2009 6:52 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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