You know that feeling you get when you watch a film and you just can’t accept the fact that, when the credits are finished rolling, your experience with this piece of fiction is over? I mean, we’re in the age of special features and specifically themed conventions, so a slew of movies do extend further into viewers’ lives. But what about something more immersive than behind-the-scenes featurettes, like a museum exhibit? I guess the real question would be, “Have you ever said anything like that about Avatar?” If your answer is yes, then I can’t save you from the comment section.
Nevertheless, New Jersey’s Liberty Science Center will be debuting Avatar: The Exhibition on February 16th, and it will run, or ride a Great Leonopteryx, through May 19th. While I don’t cut the film that much slack, James Cameron’s directorial process will almost always be more interesting than his movies to me. It’s like he exists on a level higher than filmmaker, but lower than “good filmmaker.”
Hear it from the man himself:
The exhibition will be a unique opportunity for people to learn more not only about how the film was made, but also experience Pandora in a much deeper way. Fans will be able to see in-person the workmanship behind the film, whether it’s how scenes are captured, or how a Na’vi costume was built first as a real-world garment then produced digitally.
It actually sounds like a great way to spend an afternoon. Visitors can see their own avatars, thanks to a motion-capture stage, and you can then explore an interactive 3D environment of Pandora. You can “direct” a scene using a hand-held camera similar to Cameron’s, and experience CGI filmmaking firsthand. Learn the Na’vi language. Use a touch screen to view the enormous collection of concept art, as well as directing sound design within one of the film’s scenes. Finally, you can make your own plant, based on the cold hard facts behind Avatar‘s biological principles.
I’m a sucker for a children’s museum and things like that, so I would definitely make it to this if I were anywhere nearby. But to go travel to Jersey, and have to experience all things Avatar, is one Neil Diamond song away from being my first circle of Hell.