James Cameron premiered a 24-minute footage from his highly anticipated sci-fi epic “Avatar” at Cinema Expo in Amsterdam. According to Cameron much of the 24-minute footage came from the first third of the film, but also some battle scenes from later in the film. Cameron also stated that he hopes theater owners will convert to 3D as soon as possible, but also notes that “Avatar” will work on any screen.
The footage utilized the RealD XL Cinema System. The 3D presentation was on a 55-foot screen (16,5 m) with nearly 10-foot (3 m) Lamberts of light, delivering the largest and brightest 3D presentation at Cinema Expo.
In “Avatar,” Jake, a paraplegic war veteran is brought to another planet, Pandora, which is inhabited by the Na’vi, a humanoid race with their own language and culture. Those from Earth find themselves at odds with each other and the local culture
During the presentation, cast members Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Sam Worthington and Sigourney Weaver were said to introduce the scenes. In a short report sent to IESB by an audience, it is noted that Weaver was up first, explaining that her character, Dr. Grace Augustine, is a scientist who “dreams of living side by side with the 10-feet tall, blue skinned creatures the Na’Vi” and thus creates the replica of Na’Vi called Avatars.
Then, Lang took over to explain that “the only way to deal with the Na’Vi is to kill them” adding that though the creatures “maybe stronger physically”, human “have more powerful weapons.” Worthington was next to talk about his character, Jake Sully, before Saldana who plays a Na’Vi called Neytiri ended by sharing “It took months to prepare for this role. I had to learn to fight like a Na’Vi. It was very demanding, but also really fun.”
The finished scenes reportedly exposed Jake’s Avatar walking around on Pandora and fighting all kinds of exotic creatures. One saw Jake and Neytiri walk in the jungle where flowers, trees and the earth glow in the dark, another featured the unfinished scene of the battle between the humans and the Na’Vi.
Here is a quote from:
Little fireflies and birds fly through the shots without being there. You just take them as the world, like a dove in Central Park. It’s not placed there, it lives there and just happens to be in the shot… There’s a shot of leaves somewhere which is so photorealistic you don’t want to think it’s CGI. You believe this world from the get-go. It’s there, you don’t need to believe it because you will experience it”.
This movie will change the industry…Fifty years from now I’ll tell my grandkids I was at this presentation and witnessed it 6 months before the movieworld was changed…You believe this world from the get-go. It’s there, you don’t need to believe it because you will experience it…The cast and Cameron came back on stage after the last clip, took a VERY VERY VERY long round of applause and the houselights came on.
The most beautiful scene follows directly after the one I’ve described above. When Jake wants to take his torch with him, Neytiri takes it from him and throws it in the river. Like magic the flowers and plants – even the grassy soil – begin to glow in the night. The beauty completely takes my breath away. Meanwhile we get to learn more about Neytiri and her people. Everybody who knows the story of Native American Pocahontas and John Smith, will recognize a lot of similarities. Before you can sing “Colors of the Wind,” Neytiri guides Jake through her world. Mysterious flowing and glowing seeds from a mystic tree appear out of nowhere. To Neytiri’s surprise Jake attracts them. She has a look in her eyes like he’s the ‘chosen one.’ And of course she’s right. Jake has to lead the Na’Vi into battle against the massive army of Colonel Quaritch.
“Avatar” footage at #cinexpo: CGI was photorealistic, characters look really real. Believe the hype, this movie will be massive!
“Avatar” has been anchored by a reported production budget of at least $200 million and comes to theaters on December 18 from 20th Century Fox.