I'll be back -- in 3D: Cameron turning Titanic 3D, Aliens and Terminator to follow?

James Cameron wants to see Aliens and Terminator 2 in 3D, once he's finished refloating Titanic in three dimensions

Terminator 2 could be back... in 3D. Fresh from reinventing 3D filmmaking with Avatar , James Cameron wants to go back in time to target his own back catalogue and convert Aliens and the Terminator films into 3D -- once he's finished adding an extra dimension to Titanic.

Cameron is currently working on converting his 1997 Oscar-snatcher to three dimensions. He's already revisited the stricken ship in 3D with his IMAX documentary Ghosts of the Abyss, although he warns viewers that the retro-fitted Titanic will be more like "2.8D".

He's certainly wary of the bad press heaped on Clash of the Titans, which had 3D hastily slapped on just before release. The vertiginous closing scenes as the ship rises out of the sea will be worth seeing in 3D, as will Kate Winslet's cleavage and Billy Zane's scenery-chewing, but it's hardly worth sitting through the whole three hours yet again.

More promisingly, Cameron told 3DHollywood.net that after Titanic -- set for 2012 -- he could see Aliens and the Terminator films being commercially viable for the 3D treatment. We just hope Cameron resists the urge for any George Lucas-style "Greedo shoots first" tinkering, which did the 1997 Star Wars: Special Editions no favours.

Aliens and Terminator 2 are among the last of the sci-fi action movies to rely on physical effects rather than computer-generated imagery. Compare the physical, terrifying weightiness of the alien queen and powerloader duking it out in Aliens with the plasticky, clearly fake mecha in Avatar.

Terminator 2 is also remembered as a tipping point in realistic CGI effects, although the first CGI character was in the genuinely scary romp Young Sherlock Holmes. We'd like to see the T-1000 effects in 3D, including the moment where Robert Patrick's implacable liquid-metal cop melts through the bars of the hospital, or walks out of flaming wreckage. The motorbike chase in 3D... cripes, we're going to have to skive off this afternoon and dig out the DVD.

Ridley Scott, meanwhile, is also revisiting the chest-bursting Alien franchise, working on not one but two prequels to his own 1979 movie that started the now-tired series. Blimey, is nobody writing original screenplays these days?

Cinemas are packed enough with sequels and remakes as it is. Do we really need visionary directors like Scott, Cameron and Tim Burton retelling hackneyed stories like Robin Hood and Alice In Wonderland, and tarting about with their own back catalogue rather than making new films? Drop your thoughts in the comments. And of course, hasta la vista, baby.

 

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