Wednesday, February 20, 2008

More on Avatar: Weaver Speaks!

Now I enjoyed this interview much better! Sigourney Weaver is of course starring in James Cameron's "Avatar" and she speaks with Premiere magazine about her experiences there. I will skip straight to the Avatar related material for you:

How much screentime will you have in Avatar? Would you describe your part there as a supporting role?
No, I have the female lead. You know, live action. I guess I would have to say that Sam and Zoe play the romantic leads, but I probably have the next biggest, or as big a part.

Has Jim mellowed any? Is that possible?
I think, you know, he gets impatient trying to get his ideas across to people, but I think he's very mellowed. He was always a sweetheart. [She responds to my raised-eyebrow look] He really was always a sweetheart! He can get impatient with people. I think as long as you don't take it personally... so that hasn't changed. And he always puts so much on himself — in this case, he invented the cameras, he did the sets, he designed the guns, he designed a lot of the creatures that are going to be in this other world — it's all from his head. He's operating the camera. Because people can't read his mind, that makes him a little impatient. I think, considering what he's taken on, he's quite angelic, actually.

Did you guys spend a lot of time talking about the old days, or was it down to business?
Well, it's both. We're very fond of each other because that was quite an experience in itself. So there definitely is a happy vibe working together and then we do try to get on with it. I mean, he created a wonderful character for me. She's a lot like him — she's very impatient, she's very driven, she's got a big heart, she's very complicated and you see very different people in the human world and in the avatar world. It's a fantastic canvas for me to paint on — it's certainly not a supporting role in any way.

Has he let you read the whole Avatar script? Is he keeping it to himself?
Oh no, I've read the whole script.

What would you compare it to?
I can't think of anything, frankly. I can't think of anything. It's gonna blow the mind of this industry, I think. It's gonna be an experience for people. I don't think they're going to want to come out of the theater. I think kids will want to stay in the theater with their sleeping bags so they don't have to go out into the real world. It's about something. It's about ecology in a lot of ways. About greed.

Yeah. About love. About becoming a man. You know, a lot of his favorite themes. It's a very dense piece of work. I've only seen the motion-capture 40 percent done, but it's pretty awesome. The live action I've seen almost all of, and it's a very affecting story. When you see scenes that are very affecting in 3D, you can't keep them out.

The movie isn't slated for release until December '09, but it sounds like you've seen a lot of completed work. I imagined it was mostly not done yet.
Oh, it is mostly not done yet. I saw something someone else had edited of my scenes. For some reason, they wanted me to see most of my scenes before I left, so I was forced to do that. I think he's very proud of how it's going. Then I got to see certain scenes that are in the script at Weta, when I was over there talking to the animators about Grace, my character. They're just doing a fabulous job. Everyone is going to want to go to this place.

What does Grace look like, by the way?
She's got beautiful, bright red hair and big eyelashes. No make-up. She's a scientist, and she's an attractive woman who has given up a normal life to devote herself to this planet and fight this fight. She learns a lot over the course of the story.

So there ya go - more information than we had before! Grace has red hair and no make-up. Well at least we learned something, officially anyway!

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