Synopses & Reviews
In 1995, James Cameron began work on a story that would, more than a decade later, evolve into Avatar, the blockbuster of 2009 and no less than the movie event of the decade. Opening to international critical acclaim (including nine Academy Award® nominations) and unprecedented box-office success, Avatar quickly, within a few short weeks, became the highest-grossing film on record. An epic for our times, this next-generation spectacle blends action, adventure, and romance with a timely message of ecological responsibility while using, and inventing, cutting-edge technologies to transport audiences to a lush, fully realized alien world.
No less epic, however, was the groundbreaking and exhaustive process of bringing the film to life. Early brainstorming sessions in Malibu jumpstarted a vast production effort that ultimately spanned several years and multiple continents. The Making of Avatar reveals never-before-seen illustrations and photographs, with a text that charts the technical challenges, innovations, and discoveries that made the film's breakthroughs possible. Working in tandem, artists and technicians created new tools and processes to realize the film's vision, including those for performance capture, which allows the nuances of the actors' performances to be translated faithfully to their digital characters; a virtual camera system, which empowered Cameron to direct within a virtual world with unprecedented range, generate real-time composites, and blend live action and special effects more naturally and intuitively than ever before; and stereoscopic photography, which produced the most immersive 3-D experience to date. Here is the behind-the-scenes celebration of this monumental undertaking, the official record of how Cameron, the actors, and the crew made a film, and made history.
The story of James Cameron and his crew's journey from "Avatar's" conception to the vast production effort is examined in the first authoritative and official record in words and pictures from the most significant film of today.
Academy Award-winning writer/director James Cameron, the maker of Titanic
and the creator of the Terminator
series, has been crafting Avatar
for over four years. The film follows the story of an ex-marine who finds himself thrust into hostilities on a distant planet filled with exotic life forms. As an avatar, a human consciousness in an alien body, he finds himself torn between two worlds, in a desperate fight for his own survival and that of the indigenous people. The Art of Avatar,
the companion book to this epic 3-D action adventure, explores the developmental and conceptual art used by the creative team to create the original world of Avatar.and#160;With over 100 exclusive full-color images including sketches, matte paintings, drawings, and film stills, The Art of Avatar
reveals the process behind the creation of set designs for the imaginative vistas, unique landscapes, aerial battle scenes, bioluminescent nights, and fantastical creatures. Interviews with art directors, visual effects designers, animators, costume designers, and creature makers bring insight into this creative process. The Art of Avatar
brings readers behind the scenes of this unprecedented moviegoing experience.
About the Author
has been a writer and editor for over 15 years. She has created illustrated books for a wide variety of films and television shows including Kung Fu Panda, 24, Star Wars, Shrek, Madagascar, and The X-Files,
as well as anniversary editions for Sony Pictures Imageworks and the USC School of Cinematic Arts. She lives in San Francisco.and#160;Peter Jackson
is a three-time Academy Award-winning director, producer, and screenwriter, best known for The Lord of the Rings
is an Academy Award-winning producer and former executive vice president at Twentieth Century Fox, and is currently a partner in James Cameron's Lightstorm Entertainment.