While James Cameron is busy focusing on the sequels to “Avatar,” Australia’s Herald Sun is reporting that mining billionaire Clive Palmer is intent on squaring off against Cameron’s previous billion-dollar blockbuster, “Titanic.”
Last spring Palmer announced his intention to build an exact replica of the ill-fated cruise ship as the flagship vessel of his cruise company and dub it the Titanic II. Not content with courting ironic disaster, Palmer has decided to make not one, but two films about his new ship. The first, a documentary, would detail the construction of the life-sized replica. The second film—fictional, of course—will be set on his massive new oceanliner, with Palmer boldly promising that his “Titanic” movie “should be a lot better movie than” Cameron’s hugely successful film.
“The script’s looking pretty good at the moment—it’s not finished but it’s very interesting,” said Palmer before adding that “it will be about [his ship’s] first voyage and some of the things that happen on it.” And yes, it will have “some love in it.”
Lest you think this is only just some hare-brained scheme by a guy with too much money and time on his hands, there is some filmmaking lineage in Palmer’s blood. His father was apparently a silent movie actor and radio player as well. And that’s not all, as Palmer is also founding Palmer Pictures, which could be used for film distribution, though the trademark also includes “a range of goods and services including teddy bears, books, bar services, video recordings, golf club bags and rollerskates.” Might as well have all the merchandising opportunities covered.
Claiming his movie will be a “worldwide thing,” it seems Palmer is serious about this whole endeavor. Your move, Cameron.