James Cameron Says He Agrees With Thanos, Half The Population Needs To Go
James Cameron thinks Marvel villain Thanos had a good point.
Underwater blockbuster filmmaker James Cameron thinks that Marvel Cinematic Universe villain Thanos had a point about the reduction in population to offset environmental issues like climate change. In a new interview with Time, the Terminator director said “I can relate to Thanos… I thought he had a pretty viable answer,” with the answer presumably being the instant, painless erasure of half of the population of the universe. Just to be clear, James Cameron also went on to say that Thanos’ method of random yet compulsory Blipping is not the way to go.
James Cameron may agree with Thanos that something has to be done about the massive, unsustainable consumption of resources due to population in both the real world and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but he also feels the solution needs to be voluntary. Therein lies the problem, though, with Cameron adding “nobody is going to put up their hand to volunteer to be the half that has to go.” True enough, though that did not seem to be a consideration of the Marvel Big Bad.
Fortunately, James Cameron is a wildly successful filmmaker rather than a giant, purple alien-like Thanos bent on imposing his will on the rest of the universe, even if it does not agree with his Malthusian philosophy. Whereas the Mad Titan first pursued his goals by the violent slaughter of half of a planet’s population, Cameron has instead embarked on nearly as quixotic a goal: making Avatar films.
Both the first Avatar film and the long-in-development sequel Avatar: The Way of Water have been widely noted as containing environmentalist themes, with resource-hungry human forces plundering nature without concern for the impact on biosystems. While the Avatar series thus far has also been criticized for a certain lack of depth or nuance in its messaging and narrative, it cannot be disputed that James Cameron’s methods are a bit less awful than those of Thanos.
Avatar: The Way of Water took over a decade to make it to theaters, in part because James Cameron’s vision for the movie was so grand and specific that it took the development of entirely new technologies to film motion-capture scenes underwater. For a time, even the filmmaker himself seemed uncertain whether the massive budget of the film was going to spell disaster for the future of the franchise, but things have not panned out that way.
Just recently, Avatar: The Way of Water overtook James Cameron’s own 1997 Leonardo DiCaprio/Kate Winslet film, Titanic, to become the third highest-grossing film of all time (not adjusting for inflation). There is a definite chance that James Cameron’s newest movie could climb up another spot to defeat Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, as it already did with Infinity War.
Of course, Avatar: The Way of Water would then find itself in direct competition with the first Avatar movie for the top spot. James Cameron has plans for a whole bunch of environmental message science fiction epics on the way, so we had better get used to him giving props to Thanos.