Cameron Geeks Out Again
But at that point, I started to realize the power of dream imagery: something that couldn't be explained. That was cinema magic. And people use that term a lot but I'm using it in a very specific sense: the way Clark defines magic. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. And, for me, when I was seven-years-old, it was Mysterious Island and Seventh Voyage of Sinbad. I had no idea how that stuff was done -- it was magic. So we were showing people discernible magic.
So I thought, all right, with Terminator 2, I had already thought of the liquid metal guy seven or eight years earlier, when I was writing the original Terminator, but I took that character out because we didn't know how to do it. Now we knew how to do it, so The Abyss was a sort of wet run for doing Terminator 2. So now we leaped off the cliff again, it was your main villain sot it had to work throughout the film. And everyone remembers the liquid metal guy from Terminator 2, but not too many people remember that there were only 42 CG shots in the whole movie. And it seems to almost go up by an order of magnitude every time I do one of these things because then we came to Titanic with 420 effects shots of all kinds but mostly CG shots. Even some of the model shots had CG crowds, to Avatar, released 12 years later, which had 2,600 CG shots -- basically, every shot in the film. I think there's less than a minute that's not an effect of some kind.
Bill Desowitz is senior editor of AWN & VFXWorld.