Titanic and Avatar director James Cameron is making a history of sci-fi documentary

The filmmaker is going non-fiction on science fiction

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James Cameron, the man behind Avatar and its four (at the last count) sequels, will be making a documentary series for AMC that follows the history of science fiction.

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Slated to debut in 2018 (the same year as Avatar 2), James Cameron’s Story of Science Fiction will consist of six one-hour episodes, each exploring a single question that has been addressed through sci-fi books, films and video games.

Plus, the director, writer, and producer of two of the highest grossing films of all time will talk to other yet-to-be-announced directors about their favourite sci-fi works and how it influenced them. In other words, expect some of the world’s biggest geek-offs caught on screen. 

Making the announcement at the Television Critics Association (TCA) winter presentation in Los Angeles, Cameron said, “When I was a kid, I basically read any book with a spaceship on the cover and I saw 2001: A Space Odyssey many, many times. The movie inspired me to become a filmmaker. I liked the special effects, but I really loved the ideas and the questions behind them: How will the world end? Will technology destroy us? What does it mean to be human?”

“These are subjects sci-fi has never been afraid to tackle,” added the director. “With this series, we are going back to the origins of sci-fi, following the DNA of these ideas back to the source. Without Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, there wouldn’t have been Ray Bradbury or Robert A. Heinlein, and without them, there wouldn’t be [George] Lucas, [Steven] Spielberg, Ridley Scott or me. 

“As a filmmaker who specialises in science fiction, I’m interested in exploring the struggles and the triumphs that brought these incredible stories to life and seeing how art imitates life, as well as how science fiction imitates and sometimes informs science.”

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James Cameron’s Story of Science Fiction starts in 2018