When it comes to filming the Avatar sequel, James Cameron isn’t letting any amount of water stand between him and the perfect shot.
The 56-year-old director is currently working with Australian engineers to build a manned submersible capable of descending to the bottom of the Marians Trench — the deepest point on the planet at over 36,000ft. For Titanic, Cameron has to only go as far as 12,000ft.
“We are building a vehicle to do the dive”, he told The Sunday Times. “It’s about half-completed in Australia.”
Cameron added that the two-seater submersible will be fitted with a heating system and 3D cameras to capture pictures of the depths for the Avatar sequel. If successful, the filmmaker and his co-pilot would become only the second manned-submersible team to make it to the bottom of the trench. In 1960, a scientist and navy lieutenant descended five hours in the submersible “Trieste” to 35,797 ft, where they spent just 20 minutes before beginning their ascent.
“We are using lightweight but very strong carbon composite materials and other advanced technologies very different from the Trieste, which was a hollowed-out cannonball,” he told The Times. “We believe we have solved most of the technological challenges to returning to the Mariana Trench. The real trick now is to make such vessels lighter, cheaper and more attractive to industry.”