MOSCOW, August 16 (RIA Novosti) - Hollywood film director, screenwriter and producer James Cameron was born on August 16, 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada into the family of an engineer. In 1971, he moved to the United States and enrolled in the Department of Physics at California State University.
After graduating, he started writing screenplays. There was little interest in his work for some time, and James had to earn his living working as a truck driver.
His first job in the film industry was as an art director and a miniature-model maker in a low-budget film, Battle Beyond the Stars (1980), by Roger Corman. The following year, he worked designing and directing special effects on John Carpenter's cult sci-fi thriller Escape from New York. Also in 1981, Cameron made his directorial debut on a sequel to the horror movie Piranha. Piranha 2: The Spawning went unnoticed by critics and the public.
Things turned around for Cameron after The Terminator (1984), starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, was released. The film enjoyed global recognition, earned over $100 million worldwide and gave a boost to the careers of both Cameron and Schwarzenegger.
Aliens (1986), the sequel to Alien (1979), was also a great success. The film received seven Oscar nominations and won Oscars for best visual and sound effects.
The Abyss (1989) is the story of contact with extraterrestrial intelligence in the ocean depths. The film received four Oscar nominations and won one for best visual effects.
Terminator II: Judgment Day was released in 1991. In this film, Cameron used an innovative visual effects technology first tested in The Abyss. The result was a liquid metal robot, which has become one of the most impressive achievements in special effects. The film hit a worldwide box office record and received Oscars in the categories of make-up, sound, sound effects editing and visual effects.
In 1994, Cameron directed True Lies, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger once again. The film hit the top ten box office films of 1994.
In 1996, 20th Century Fox began filming the epic project Titanic, for which Cameron was the screenwriter, director and producer. Young actors Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio were invited to play the principal characters. The movie was filmed on a Russian research vessel, Akademik Mstislav Keldysh. Cameron personally went to the bottom of the sea to film the remains of the Titanic on the Russian submersibles Mir-1 and Mir-2. This footage helped designers to recreate the interior of the ship, and the studios to create miniature models of it.
The film premiered in December 1997. Audiences around stood in long lines to see the film. Over several months, Titanic grossed more than $1.8 billion. The film received 11 Oscars, including for best picture and best director.
After Titanic, Cameron took some time off and shot only two documentaries, Ghosts of the Abyss (2003) and Aliens of the Deep (2005), over the course of the next few years.
In 2009, Cameron's new film Avatar hit the big screen. The action of this epic drama unfolds on the planet Pandora, and depicts a civilizational war for resources. Avatar became another triumph for Cameron, grossing about $2.8 billion worldwide.
The Broadcast Film Critics Association named Avatar the best action film of 2009.
Avatar won the Golden Globe for best drama of the year, while Cameron was awarded the Golden Globe for best director.
According to Forbes, James Cameron topped the list of the seven most influential Hollywood figures in 2010.
In 2011, in conjunction with producer Vince Pace, Cameron founded the Cameron-Pace Group to promote the 3D format across all entertainment systems.
On March 26, 2012, James Cameron made the world's first single dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench (about 11 kilometers below the sea surface) on a specially designed submersible. The dive lasted nearly seven hours. Its main goals were to collect samples for research and footage for his next film.
In April 2012, the 3D version of James Cameron’s Titanic was released. Converting the film to the 3D format took a year and cost $18 million. The 3D version grossed more than $2 billion.
In December 2013, Cameron announced his plans to shoot three sequels to Avatar, to be released in 2016-2018.
Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge 3D is scheduled for release in August 2014. A significant portion of the video was filmed by Cameron in stereo 3D during a dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench.
James Cameron has been married several times. He has a daughter, Josephine Archer (born 1984), with actress Linda Hamilton.
In 2000, he married American actress Suzy Amis, who made a cameo appearance as Rose's granddaughter in Titanic. They have three children together: twins Claire and Quinn (born 2001) and a daughter, Elizabeth Rose (born 2006).