James Cameron: Shades of versatility

Published: April 2, 2012

Director James Cameron is earning extra money by renting his exclusive 3D cameras and other film-making equipment to other directors. PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES: 

The recent trend of making films in 3D has made director James Cameron one of the biggest financial winners in Hollywood. The director has emerged as one of Tinsel town’s hottest entrepreneurs by cashing in on the 3D technology he created for Avatar, which ranks as the highest-grossing film with a worldwide box office take of $2.8 billion.

Cameron also directed the second-highest grossing film of all time, the nautical disaster-romance starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, Titanic, which is set to return to theatres in 3D on Wednesday.

As George Lucas set the standard for special effects with Star Wars, Cameron, 57, is setting the bar for 3D technology with cameras he created and making millions in the process by renting them.

The Cameron Pace Group, which the director formed 12-years-ago with camera guru Vince Pace, last year generated $58 million approximately, said its Chief Operating Officer OD Welch.

The production company collects money every step in the 3D movie-making process. It rents its Fusion 3D rig and other equipment to film producers such as Michael Bay, who used it for Transformers: Dark of the Moon for up to $3 million a film.

Cameron is so serious about the production quality of his 3D cameras that his company bestows a seal of approval, as it did with Martin Scorsese’s film Hugo. That certification allows a studio to promote the quality of its films to investors and potential distributors, said Lyndsay Harding, Chief Financial Officer of Evergreen Films, the first studio to be CPG certified.

In addition to his 3D camera business, Cameron is helping design a new Avatar-themed area of Walt Disney Co’s Animal Kingdom Park in Orlando. For his work with Disney’s Imagineering unit, Cameron will share in the royalties from the merchandise, rides or anything else they create.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 3rd, 2012.

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