|James Cameron Quick Info|
|Height||6 ft 2 in|
|Date of Birth||August 16, 1954|
James Cameron is an Academy-award winning filmmaker from Canada. He is best remembered for movies like Titanic (1997) and Avatar (2009) which have revolutionized the cinema-goers’ movie-watching experience forever. His constant zeal to reinvent the world of technology and cinema has enabled him to shoot scenes previously considered impossible. Known for his perfectionist trait and unflinching determination, Cameron has become a revered name in the film industry. In addition to being a meticulous director, he is also an explorer, environmentalist, and philanthropist. James is equally passionate about the environment and promotes a vegan lifestyle.
James Francis Cameron
Iron Jim, Jim, James Cameron and his Lawyers, H, A. Milton, J. C.
Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada
- Malibu, California, United States
- Wairarapa, New Zealand
- Los Angeles, California, United States
James studied at Stamford Collegiate School in Ontario. When he was 17 years old, his family shifted base to Brea in California. He then attended Sonora High School and after dropping out, enrolled at Brea Olinda High School.
Next, he attended the community college, Fullerton College to study physics in 1973. He switched it to English and the next year, in 1974, before the fall semester could begin, he dropped out of college.
Filmmaker, Environmentalist, Explorer, Philanthropist
- Father – Phillip Cameron (Electrical Engineer)
- Mother – Shirley Cameron (née Lowe) (Artist, Nurse)
- Siblings – Mike Cameron (Younger Brother) (Stunt Performer), John David Cameron (Younger Brother) (Producer). He also has 2 other younger siblings.
- Others – Jasper Robards (Step-son) (Wife Suzy Amis’s son with ex-husband Sam Robards)
James is represented by Cameron l Pace Group located in California.
6 ft 2 in or 188 cm
78 kg or 172 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
James Cameron has dated –
- Sharon Williams (1977-1984) – James’s first high-profile relationship was with actress Sharon Williams in 1977. The couple got married on February 14, 1978, and stayed together for around 6 years till 1984. Their divorce was finalized in July 1984.
- Gale Anne Hurd (1984-1989) – Film producer Gale Anne Hurd began a relationship with the director in 1984. She was the producer of the hugely-successful The Terminator (1984) which was directed by Cameron. They got married in 1985 but 4 years later were headed down for divorce. They were officially separated in 1989.
- Kathryn Bigelow (1988-1991) – In 1988, James fell for director Kathryn Bigelow. A year later, he got married for the third time on August 17, 1989. Their relationship deteriorated soon after and by November 1991, the couple had terminated their marriage.
- Linda Hamilton (1991-1999) – Cameron and actress Linda Hamilton, who starred in The Terminator films as Sarah Connor, started a relationship close on the heels of his divorce from Kathryn Bigelow. She moved in with him in 1991 and gave birth to their first (and only) child, a girl named Josephine Archer Cameron in 1993. After dating for around 6 years, James and Linda got hitched on July 26, 1997. Hamilton spoke about her tumultuous time with Cameron and considered the Titanic (1997) phase, the last straw in their crumbling marriage. It was also at this time that Cameron began a relationship with Suzy Amis, an actress in Titanic. Hamilton filed for divorce in March 1998, days after Cameron’s Oscar win. She received $50 million in her divorce settlement which was finalized in 1999.
- Suzy Amis (1998-Present) – Actress and environmentalist Suzy Amis played the role of Lizzy Calvert in Cameron’s directorial venture Titanic. Their affair began in 1998 and, after his divorce was finalized, the two got married on June 4, 2000. The couple has 3 children together – daughter Claire Cameron (b. April 4, 2001), son Quinn Cameron (b. September 2003), and daughter Elizabeth Rose Cameron (b. December 29, 2006).
Race / Ethnicity
He has Scottish ancestry.
However, his hair has turned gray due to his advancing age.
James has done endorsement work for the following brands –
- Rolex (2017)
- Walt Disney World (2017)
- New Zealand Tourism
His movie Avatar (2009) was used in a Japanese Panasonic TV advertisement.
Best Known For
- His record-breaking films which include cult movies like The Terminator (1984), Aliens (1986), The Abyss (1989), Titanic (1997), Avatar (2009), etc
- Being a pioneer in 3D technology and revolutionizing 3D cinema with his film Avatar
- Being a hardcore environmentalist and using his status to raise awareness about climate change
- His contributions to science and technology as well as his cutting-edge deep-sea explorations
James made his theatrical film debut in 1997 with his own directorial film Titanic. However, his minor role as a steerage dancer was uncredited.
His first credited performance was in 1999 when he played himself in Albert Brooks’s comedy film The Muse.
First TV Show
He made his first TV show appearance as a guest on the talk show Late Night with David Letterman in 1989.
Cameron, along with his family, had adopted a vegan diet in 2012. Since then, he has been a proponent of veganism and considers choosing a plant-based diet the biggest contribution one can make in combating climate change. He has credited his new diet for his improved health and sustenance.
On a typical day, Cameron follows a meticulous routine such as –
- 5 A.M. – He starts his day early with a pre-workout green smoothie made from spinach, orange, banana, and apple.
- 6 A.M. – He dedicates an hour to his workout which ranges from yoga, kickboxing to lightweight training done with high-intensity intervals.
- 7:30 A.M. – Breakfast for him includes scrambled eggs made with tofu or quesadilla using plant-cheese, red beans, and rice. In addition to it, he has a protein shake made with nut butter, fruit, and pea protein as well as a cup of Oolong tea. In the form of supplements, he consumes hemp oil capsules, vitamin D, MSM, and B12.
- 11 A.M. – For his mid-morning hunger pangs, he opts for fresh fruits like watermelon, grapes, and berries.
- 1:30 P.M. – He has vegan chefs Brad and Sandy prepare dishes from various cuisines like Mexican, Italian, Thai, and Indian. Also, burgers from Beyond Meat and Hungry Planet, which specialize in plant-based substitutes for meat, are his go-to choice for comfort foods. Finally, a bowl of soup to go along with it.
- 4:30 P.M. – During the evenings, he eats a green salad.
- 8 P.M. – He keeps his last meal of the day pretty light with either a plant-based burger, or some hummus with pita and olives, or avocado with salsa. Lastly, he gobbles it down with a glass of wine.
James Cameron Favorite Things
- Films – The Wizard of Oz (1939), Dr. Strangelove (1964), 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), The Godfather (1972), Taxi Driver (1976)
- Song To Sing In The Shower – Ride of the Valkyries by Richard Wagner
- Film Of 2013 – Gravity
- Guilty Pleasure Movie – Resident Evil (2002)
Source – Fandor.com, Reddit
James Cameron Facts
- Cameron has been a resident of the United States since 1971. In 2004, he had put in an application for American citizenship but withdrew the same after George W. Bush came into power in his 2nd term. He still holds Canadian citizenship.
- He was enlisted in Time Magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People in the World’ in 2010.
- Pristimantis jamescameroni is a newly discovered species of frog that was named after Cameron in October 2013. He was chosen in order to recognize his long-term efforts in raising awareness about the environment and promoting veganism.
- Classic films like Star Wars (1977) and 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) convinced Cameron that art and science could be integrated seamlessly in films. It is what inspired him to work as a director in the film industry.
- His first film project was a 10-minute long sci-fi story called Xenogenesis, which he wrote after reading Syd Field‘s book on filmmaking techniques called ‘Screenplay’. The film was shot with the help of his friends using a 35 mm lens and rented cameras.
- At the start of his career, he worked at Roger Corman Studios. While there, he worked in different capacities such as art director, special effects designer, production designer, and assistant director. His time there taught him valuable skills and techniques that can help produce quality content in a limited budget.
- The central idea for The Terminator came to Cameron in his sleep. During an illness, he had a nightmare that a futuristic robot hitman was sent to kill him. He developed this concept to direct his first feature film that launched his career.
- He sold the screenplay to Gale Ann Hurd of Pacific Western Productions for $1 on the condition that he gets to direct the film. The Terminator, made on a shoestring budget of $6.4 million, went on to earn $78.3 million at the box office. Later in life, he lamented on his decision to sell the rights of the story, that has since spawned several sequels and a TV series.
- James is notorious for prolonging the filming schedules and going way over-budget on all his films. The same was the case with Titanic whose budget reached $200 million and was considered the most expensive film of its time. Eventually, it became the first film to have a worldwide gross of $1 billion.
- James jokingly refers to Titanic as the $190 million ‘Chick Flick’.
- Cameron is left-handed. Actress Kate Winslet had revealed in 2004 that James had drawn the n*de portrait of Rose in a pivotal scene in Titanic. His hands were used in the close-up shots which were then flipped to denote the right-handedness of Leonardo Dicaprio‘s character.
- On the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the RMS Titanic in April 2012, Cameron’s film was re-released in 3D. The final worldwide collection reached $2.18 billion. The only other film in history to cross the $2 billion mark is his 2009 sci-fi film Avatar.
- Cameron and his brother John David launched a digital media company in 1998 called Earthship Productions. The company has worked on several undersea documentaries like Expedition: Bismarck (2002), Ghosts of the Abyss (2003), Titanic Adventure by Tony Robinson (2005), etc.
- He produced the controversial documentary The Lost Tomb of Jesus with Israeli journalist Simcha Jacobovici on March 4, 2007. The series documented the excavating of the Talpiot Tomb and alleged that it contained the human remains of the family of Jesus. However, the views expressed by Cameron and his team in the series were mired in dispute.
- His love for deep sea exploration took him back to Titanic in 2012. Along with 8 experts, Cameron re-investigated the site of the shipwreck and their analysis revised the general perception of the nature of sinking that was held since 1995.
- His 2009 sci-fi epic drama Avatar revolutionized cinematic technology forever. The film, which cost more than $300 million to make, has become the highest-grossing film of all time with global revenue of $2.78 billion.
- He launched his own production company Lightstorm Entertainment in 1990.
- He is close friends with Mexican director Guillermo del Toro, whom he met in 1993 on del Toro’s film Cronos. When Guillermo’s father Federico del Toro was abducted in 1997, Cameron paid the ransom money of $1 million for his release. His father was eventually released after living in captivity for 72 days. Following this incident, del Toro relocated his family to the US.
- Cameron is the first ever solo person to reach the deepest part of the Mariana Trench called the Challenger Deep. Located in the Pacific Ocean, the Challenger Deep is the deepest point known in the earth’s seabed. On March 26, 2012, he piloted the Deepsea Challenger submersible to reach a depth of 35,787 ft. Before him, Jacques Piccard and Don Walsh were the only 2 men who had dived to the spot (together) aboard the Bathyscaphe Trieste in 1960. James spent 3 hours at the bottom of the ocean bed and his exploration helped discover many new species of marine life.
- Cameron’s technological expertise has seen him be a part of the NASA Advisory Council. He had worked on building 3-D cameras to accompany the Curiosity rover on its mission to Mars in 2012. However, the devices couldn’t be tested in time and so were sidelined by the space agency.
- Cameron’s wife Suzy has co-founded the MUSE School, along with her sister Rebecca, in Calabasas, California in 2006. The school has set precedence as the first-of-its-kind K-12 vegan school in the US.
- In light of the Harvey Weinstein s*xual abuse scandal in 2017, Cameron came forward with an incident where he almost hit the disgraced mogul with his Oscar. At the Academy Awards in 1998, Weinstein approached James to talk about how his company Miramax was great for talented artists. Cameron retaliated with a scathing reply on how Miramax had ill-treated his friend Guillermo del Toro during the shooting of his film Mimic (distributed by Miramax), which almost escalated into an actual fight.
- James is the first director to have 2 of his films (Titanic and Avatar) earn more than $1 billion each as global box office collections. Only 2 other directors have managed this feat; Christopher Nolan for The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012) and Peter Jackson for The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012).
- Roger Dean, a British artist, had sued Cameron for $50 million in June 2013. He accused the director of plagiarising his original images for his film Avatar but later on, lost the case.
- His directorial style has influenced generations of filmmakers. Among them are Joss Whedon, Quentin Tarantino, Peter Jackson, Baz Luhrmann, Neill Blomkamp, and Michael Bay.
- Cameron’s on-set behavior has often come under fire and over the years, he has been criticized for his dictatorial manners while shooting. Many of his actors, including Kate Winslet, found his uncompromising ways and flaring tempers difficult to deal with.
- He had an altercation with his long-time collaborator James Horner after working with him on Aliens (1986). The two worked next only a decade later on Titanic after settling their differences.
- Cameron was inducted in the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in June 2012.
- He received a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame on June 3, 2008. The next year, on December 18, 2009, (co-incidentally which was also Avatar‘s release date) he was inducted into Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.
- In December 2022, it was revealed that James had tested positive for COVID-19.
- In January 2023, James Cameron became the only director with 3 movies to earn over $2 billion globally. His film Titanic (1997) earned $2.19 billion worldwide, Avatar (2009) earned $2.9 billion globally, and Avatar: The Way of Water (2022) entered the $2 billion club on January 22, 2023.
Featured Image by Angela George / Wikimedia / CC BY-SA 3.0