James Cameron is one of the most revered and recognized film industry titans, thanks to some of his most iconic films, especially Avatar, which happens to be one of the highest-grossing movies of all time. And now, a sequel to that blockbuster is not too far away from its release.
Although Avengers: Endgame had taken up that esteemed title of being the highest-grossing film from Avatar, it was only for a short period before the latter earned its predominant position back post its re-release. But it looks like James Cameron wasn’t all that impressed with the movie that otherwise seemed to have won people’s hearts all over the world. In fact, he isn’t much of a Marvel fan at all.
James Cameron criticizes Marvel and DC
In a recent interview with Variety, James Cameron went into heavy detail about his upcoming film, Avatar: The Way of Water; talking about the characters from his own movie, Cameron explained how they went through a vivid wave of character development, which was exactly what happened to be missing from Marvel and DC films and the franchises’ characters.
The Canadian filmmaker described how his characters Jake Sully and Neytiri were seen taking a “suicidal leap of faith” with regard to various aspects in Avatar, but how they would never resort to such impulsive behavior in the sequel because their journey as parents ends up changing their outlook on multiple things. “But when you’re a parent, you don’t think that way,” he stated referring to all the times Sully and Neytiri had done “crazy” things in the first movie.
In contrast to Avatar and Avatar: The Way of Water, Cameron pointed out, Marvel and DC films seldom involve any real growth or development when it comes to their characters. “When I look at these big, spectacular films — I’m looking at you, Marvel and DC,” the Titanic director said, “— it doesn’t matter how old the characters are, they all act like they’re in college.”
“They have relationships, but they really don’t. They never hang up their spurs because of their kids,” he observed. Cameron even said how in his opinion, the way Marvel and DC made films, is definitely not the best way. “The things that really ground us and give us power, love, and a purpose? Those characters don’t experience it, and I think that’s not the way to make movies.”
So, Cameron is neither a Marvel nor a DC buff. Got it.
Marvel and DC become the target of critical disapproval
This is certainly not the first time two of the biggest superhero franchises have come face-to-face with such sharp censure. And it is definitely not Cameron’s first time taking a hit at them either.
In a different interview with New York Times, the three-time Oscar winner had taken yet another jab at Marvel and DC, claiming that he did things that were necessary for his films, like having his cast actually go underwater to film such scenes, unlike movies like Aquaman and The Little Mermaid, which settled for CGI instead.
Upon being asked why he had his actors literally going underwater for shooting, he replied with a firm statement saying, “you want it to look like the people underwater, so they need to be underwater. It’s not some gigantic leap.”
Clearly, Cameron has plenty to say against Marvel and DC and the way they direct their films, but then again, the audience seems to be loving them regardless so they must be doing something right at least.
Avatar: The Way of Water releases on December 16, 2022.
See also: “The double standards are mind-blowing”: As James Cameron Faces Criticism For Re-Releasing Avatar, Fans Ask Why Spider-Man: No Way Home is Getting Second Theatrical Release in Less Than a Year