Even world famous directors get a little insecure sometimes. James Cameron, the creative force behind Titanic, The Terminator and Avatar, admitted he was worried about the visual quality of his 2009 sci-fi hit ahead of the release of its sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water.
Cameron told Entertainment Weekly he was concerned about how Avatar — which was recently remastered — would compare to its successor, which is premiering over a decade later and benefits from the advances in technology with much sharper special effects.
“I went into that screening worried that it was going to be a bit cringe-worthy relative to the new film, which looks pretty spectacular,” Cameron told EW, which reports that the original Avatar was remastered to 4K High Dynamic Range.
After seeing his film get a snazzy update fit for 2022, Cameron told EW all his worries melted away … well, sort of — his fears were replaced by new concerns, the director joked.
“As the film ended, I went, ‘Hmm, I don’t know. I’m now worried about the new film,’” Cameron quipped, then added more seriously, “That’s not true. I’m not worried about the new film.”
He continued, “It looks pretty amazing. But I am hopeful that people will get out to the cinema and either discover or rediscover that experience so that they know what an Avatar movie’s all about.”
Cameron promised the first Avatar film is “more gorgeous than it’s ever been,” and told EW his own kids were impressed after seeing the sci-fi epic in 3D for the first time.
While he’s got nothing but praise for his re-released movie, Cameron is even more excited about the Avatar sequel. Specifically, the director said audiences will be wowed by the water in his new movie.
“Certainly, water is much more difficult to realize in CG,” he said. “And our water is mostly CG water, but you won’t be able to tell. It looks photo-real. It looks like we just went out to the ocean in Pandora and shot it.”
You’ll have to wait a bit to see Pandora’s waters, though. The new Avatar movie premieres in theaters Dec. 16. In the meantime, you can enjoy the remastered original Avatar, which is being re-released in theaters today.