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Piranha 3D Producer Bites Back At James Cameron!

| Filed under: Celebrity FeudsFilm Flickers


Oh, man! This feud is going to be a good one!

Last week, director James Cameron made some pretty cunty remarks regarding the awesomeness that is Piranha 3D, and the producer of the film - which is a critical success, mind you - Mark Canton, has responded with this scathing, AMAZEBALLS letter!

It reads:

"As a producer in the entertainment industry, Jim Cameron's comments on VanityFair.com are very disappointing to me and the team that made Piranha 3D. Mr. Cameron, who singles himself out to be a visionary of movie-making, seems to have a small vision regarding any motion pictures that are not his own. It is amazing that in the movie-making process - which is certainly a team sport - that Cameron consistently celebrates himself out as though he is a team of one. His comments are ridiculous, self-serving and insulting to those of us who are not caught up in serving his ego and his rhetoric.

Jim, are you kidding or what? First of all, let’s start by you accepting the fact that you were the original director of PIRANHA 2 and you were fired. Shame on you for thinking that genre movies and the real maestros like Roger Corman and his collaborators are any less auteur or impactful in the history of cinema than you. Martin Scorcese made Boxcar Bertha at the beginning of his career. And Francis Ford Coppola made Dimentia 13 back in 1963. And those are just a few examples of the talented and successful filmmakers whose roots are in genre films. Who are you to impugn any genre film or its creators?

Having been deeply involved, as either an executive or as a producer, on Tim Burton’s original BATMAN and the first MEN IN BLACK, as well as 300, and now IMMORTALS, one of the things that has been consistent about all of the filmmakers involved in these landscape-changing global films is that, in each and every case, all of the directors were humbled by their predecessors, their colleagues and by their awareness of the great history of film that came before them. The enjoyment and the immersion of an audience in a movie theatre, as they had and will have with the above-mentioned films, and as audiences are experiencing with PIRANHA 3D now, comes from the originality and the vision of the filmmaker, and not just from the creation of the technology. You as much as anyone certainly knows that there are many pieces to the puzzle. Going to the movies still remains, arguably, amongst the best communal experiences that human beings can share.

My sense is that Mr. Cameron has never seen PIRANHA 3D…certainly not in a movie theatre with a real audience. Jim, we invite you to take that opportunity and experience the movie in a theatre full of fans - fans for whom this movie was always intended to entertain. Does Mr. Cameron have no idea of the painstaking efforts made by the talented young filmmaker Alex Aja and his team of collaborators? Clearly, and this one is a good bet, he has no clue as to how great and how much of a fun-filled experience the audiences who have seen the film in 3D have enjoyed. Those of us who have tried to stay in touch with the common movie audiences - the ones who really matter, the ones who actually still go to the theatre, put on the glasses, and eat the popcorn - take joy and pride in the fact that movies of all kinds, including PIRANHA 3D, have a place in filmmaking history - past, present and future. 3D unto itself is not a genre Jim, it is a tool that gives audiences an enhanced experience as they experience all kinds of movies. I believe Mr. Cameron did not see PIRANHA 3D either with any real audience or not at all. On opening weekend, I was in a Los Angeles theatre with a number of today’s great film makers including JJ Abrams, who actually had nothing short of the fabulous, fun 3D experience that the movie provides. I am fortunate enough to have worked on, and continue to work on, evolutionary movies in all formats from just simple good story telling, which still matters most of all, to CG movies to tent-pole size 3D movies, and genre 3D movies like PIRANHA 3D. What it comes down to, Jim, is - that like most things in life - size doesn’t really matter. Not everyone has the advantage of having endless amounts of money to play in their sandbox and to take ten years using other people’s money to make and market a film….like you do. Why can’t you just count your blessings?

Why do you have to drop Marty Scorsese’s or Tim Burton’s names, both gentlemen who I have personally worked with, and who have enjoyed great joy and success with movies of all genres and sizes well before the advent of modern 3D? Then as now, they were like kids in a candy store recognizing, far beyond your imagination, the possibilities of storytelling and originality. For the record, before you just totally dismiss PIRANHA 3D and all, in your opinion, worthless genre movies that actually undoubtedly gave you the ability to start your career, you should know that PIRANHA 3D had an 82% "fresh" (positive) ratting on Rotten Tomatoes on opening day - a web site that all the studios, filmmakers and the public use as a barometer of what makes a quality film.

We know that PIRANHA 3D has not achieved a box office that is on the level of many of Mr. Cameron's successes. To date, PIRANHA 3D has earned over $30 million around the globe with #1 openings in several countries. And, as the "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes indicates, critics and many, many others have embraced and celebrated PIRANHA 3D for the fun and entertaining - and even smart - movie-going experience that it is. Let’s just keep this in mind Jim….you did not invent 3D. You were fortunate that others inspired you to take it further. The simple truth is that I had nothing but good things to say about AVATAR and my own experience since I actually saw it and didn’t damn someone else’s talent publicly in order to disassociate myself from my origins in the business from which we are all very fortunate. To be honest, I found the 3D in AVATAR to be inconsistent and while ground breaking in many respects, sometimes I thought it overwhelmed the storytelling. Technology aside, I wish AVATAR had been more original in its storytelling.

We have to inspire, teach and mentor this next generation of filmmakers. It is garbage to suggest that any film or any filmmaker who cannot afford to work to your standards should be dissuaded from following his or her craft by not making 3D movies or not making movies like DISTRICT 9, for example, which probably cost the amount of AVATAR’s craft services budget, but totally rocked it in the movie theatre and in the marketplace. In that case, it was not a 3D movie. But had it been, it certainly would not have been any less original or impactful. The enormous worldwide success of AVATAR has been good in all respects for you, your financiers, your distributors and the industry, as well as for the movie going public. Jim, there is a difference between Maestro which is a word that garners respect, and Dictator or Critic which are words better left for others who are not in our mutual boat or on our team. You are one of the best, it is reasonable to think that you should dig deeper and behave like it. Young directors should be inspired by you, not publicly castigated by your mean-spirited and flawed analysis.

While we are all awed by your talents and your box office successes - and I compliment you on all of them - why don’t you rethink how you address films with which you are not involved? You should be taking the high road that is being travelled by so many of your peers, and pulling with them to ensure that we, as an industry, will have a continuum of talented filmmakers that will deliver a myriad of motion pictures both big and small, with 3D or any other technologies yet to come that will entertain audiences throughout the world. That is the challenge that we face. That is the future that we should deliver. Please go see PIRANHA in a theater near you."


A little too long-winded, but we have to agree! He shouldn't feel the need to tear ANYONE down - especially on a movie that is actually getting so much positive feedback!

He sounds like a cranky old elitist!

What do U think?? Team Avatar or Team Piranha??

[Image via WENN.]

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51 comments to “Piranha 3D Producer Bites Back At James Cameron!”

  1. 1

    Team Piranha. And you're right for once Perez - tooo long. Editing should not be optional.

  2. 2

    it is an awful, stupid movie - horror, comedy, soft care porn. BUT no denying it was entertaining. Saw it Sunday and everyone in the movie theater seemed to enjoy the movie. No hope of any Oscar nods but entertaining, Every movie does not have to be a "masterpiece". James Cameron is a pompous ass.

  3. 3

    Cameron is an ass. That's why I pirated Avatar. I won't pay a cent to see any of his movies or to by his DVDs. Yes, I'll watch his stuff because some of it is worth watching. But he's not getting my money.

    He could do so much good, but chooses to be an arrogant, ignorant boob.


  4. 4

    I am starting the official TEAM COMA from reading that post………..sheesh….

    the word of the day is 'synopsize'

  5. 5


  6. 6

    it's kinda hard to scoff at avatar in any way. its set the bar for movie blockbusters and visually appealing aesthetics. BUT clearly cameron is a douche bag. the guy wrote true lies maybe he should just chill

  7. 7

    Look, The director of Piranha needs to chill and realize that people are going to critique his work. James Cameron is 100% entitled to his opinion. There needs to be room for open and candid discussion about film between filmmakers. Just because Cameron is a fellow director doesn't mean he needs to like Canton's work! But then again James Cameron shouldn't have thrown Piranha under the bus so publicly because he is so respected by audiences. So I guess they both have a point, but the truth is, shitty 3D movies do make it difficult for good 3D movies to be taken seriously. I sorta think films like Piranha are stunts designed to make money, and as a filmmaker myself, I am not sure I always have respect for films like that. Sometimes films designed for profit are great and perfectly entertaining, some of my favorite films are shitty throw-away Hollywood stunts. But sometimes, they are tragic failures that ruin careers, and the publics perception of hollywood in general.

    Truthfully tho, if Canton was confident in his work then he would be able to brush off Cameron's remarks like all filmmakers do with critics. While his response to Cameron is passionate (and demonstrates his basic undergraduate knowledge of American Cinema), it is also him trying to convince everyone that he should be taken seriously. And the truth is, his work should stand on its own with no side notes. If the film is good and the audience likes it, then he really needs to say nothing at all.

  8. 7tizz says – reply to this


    Well, I liked Piranha 3D and I didn't like Avatar - it was a bit too preachy. I like to have fun at the movies and Piranha 3D delivered.

  9. 9

    I agree. Cameron is a cun*t.

  10. 10

    the letter started out great and then it went into Piranha 3D ismore important than it really is… its an average movie, with below average 3d, at best.

  11. 11

    Re: jcrhode

    He's a cun*t.

  12. 12

    JC has always been known as a help serving egomaniacal douche-bag in the biz…he just has all that money to say, "i want this…get it done." Then takes credit for the success when the success is from the real artist and techs that get the technology to a place that can make it happen.

    So yes, cranky old elitist sounds about right too!

  13. esj says – reply to this


    well what can you say, james cameron has always been an a$$! he's not gonna change!

  14. 14

    Piranha was such a gay film. James Cameron all the way!

  15. Zoom says – reply to this


    I wish Perez would of brought up how Cameron challanged anyone to a debate over global warming then when about a million people took him up on it he agreed to having a debate with 3 of them,then backed out altogether.(Probably because he actualy researched it himself just to realize it really is a bullshit myth)..Just another brain dead Hollywood Liberal!

  16. Jaded says – reply to this


    Luckily for the makers of Pirana 3D everyone knows Jim Cameron's a douche bag, and unless you are stuck working work him aren't real interested in what he has to say. I mean this is the man that called Kate Winslet fat, and terrorizes his entire cast and crew every time he takes the helm of a project. Do people still run to work with him? Sure, he has the money to pay people. Would anyone do a low budget / low paying Jim Cameron movie? I wouldn't hold my breathe waiting for people to sign up.
    I always amazes me that there are people who have so much who can be so gracious like Spielberg, Lucas, and Scorsese, and then there are those people who have everything and are still miserable and unhappy like Cameron and Gibson. They both really need a hug and a good therapist.

  17. 17

    Team Piranha. Definitely. Although the response is far too long, his points are valid. James Cameron, despite his self-proclaimed title of King Of The World, is just another talented, but far too serious and ego-centric, movie maker. He's no Ingmar Bergman, no David Lean, no Orson Welles. Never will be. Mark Canton, on the other hand, at least understands the genre and knows how to entertain.

  18. 18

    I think when a person has TWO of his movies top the most grossing films of all time list his point of view should hold some value with EVERY film maker in the biz. I'm total team avatar & i usual go for the underdog. but, piranha 3d is some bullshit & it's just really hard not to analog real talent like Jim Cameron's.

  19. 19

    James Cameron has cheated on every single one of his wives. He will never get my money at the theater/dvd. He's a horrible excuse for a human being. He thinks he is better than God. SO NOT TRUE!

  20. 20

    PIRANHA 3D is a great summer movie with tits & cock the way movies are meant to be. I doubt they'll try to milk your dollar$ with countless DVD releases like avatar (do we really need a longer version of that movie?)

  21. 21

    The letter could have been much more articulate (and as a result, much more scathing), but this point is there and Cameron looks like a douche lord because of it…bahaha

  22. 22

    Can I be team both? Because they're both amazing. But, as for directors, I'm team Piranha 3D.

  23. 23

    "He shouldn't feel the need to tear ANYONE down" - Perez you stupid fuck, isn't that calling the kettle black? That's basically all you do on this site… when you're not suckling on Gaga's tit and acting as her publicist. Maybe Cameron could have kept his opinion to himself, but I kinda feel this producer is using his name and comments to put the spotlight on his film. Regardless of being a douche or not, Cameron is a certifiable genius who takes an active hand in developing the technology he utilizes to make his films. The only thing you probably make are dildos for your ass that not even gay men will touch. I like reading about celebs, but dammit if I don't hate your ugly face and despicable personality. Nuff said.

  24. 24

    dang right my attention span wouldnt read it all but i get the picture hes grouchy and giving it to him in the ass…now i excitedly actually BOUGHT avatar as it wassuch a blockbuster and me and my (newish 2 yrs) bf couldnt even watch it we turn it off it was just some fantasy bs that didnt grab me

    i was disappointed and gave the dvd away to someone who had kids TRUELLY

    maybe i will go see 3d piranhas after all

  25. 25

    James Cameron is a total pompous ass. Movies should be fun also. we need the fun movies to balance the serious art stuff.

  26. 26

    I found Avatar to be a collection of scenes from other movies and books wrapped up in gummy bear colors. I couldn't finish watching it. I have not seen Titanic and do not want to see it. I will, however, be watching Piranha 3D. I neither like nor dislike James Cameron. I just prefer a little less hot air with my movies.

  27. 27


  28. 28

    Cameron is full of himself and needs to shut up. The 3D in "Avatar" was needless. Just as Paul F'n Reiser had no business being in the half assed sequel to "Alien" that Cameron directed. Try watching any of Cameron's old movies and you'll see how dated they actually are. Even "Titanic". He's good, but he's definitely not Scorcese. "Goodfelllas" or "Avatar"? We'll see who gives a crap about "Avatar" in 15 years.

  29. 29

    "but we have to agree! He shouldn't feel the need to tear ANYONE down"
    … the pot calling the kettle black. o_O

  30. 30

    Here, here! Truthfully, I'm not planning to watch Piranha 3D, but I also DID NOT LIKE Avatar. It was a hacked idea, not original, and had no finesse in the storytelling. I love that Mark Canton understands that his own movie is not about being a classic, but entertaining the audience, which is what the movie business should be about!

  31. 31

    about time someone puts that arrogant jerk in his place

  32. @v@ says – reply to this


    In the Autumn of his life, James Cameron is such a giving mentor.

  33. 33

    I'm on Team STFU!

  34. 34

    cameron is a douche!!

  35. 35

    Needs another edit, but what he said seems honest and heartfelt. I applaud his response.

  36. 36

    TEAM AVATAR!!! Piranha SUCKS!! Don't waste your money!!

  37. 37


  38. 38

    Re: Zoom
    That never happened. You live on another planet.

  39. 39

    Piranha 3D a critical success?
    Wow! Perez has mixed up his meds again!

  40. 40

    Team Piranha, DEFINITELY! Cameron is a jerk.

  41. 41

    To James Cameron: Avatar was just a Lifetime story with sweet effects, get over yourself.

  42. 42

    TEAM anything that isn't associated with Cameron. He is the douche of douches who's success has been garnered solely from the work of others that he takes credit for. Fuck him.

  43. 43

    I'd take Pirahna over some stupid Avatar, blue porn, stupidass movie anyday of the week. One is actually menat to entertain and it delivers!

  44. 44

    Team Avatar… This movie is shit, Cameron's right.

  45. 45

    VERY well said. Piranha 3-D is an hommage to 70's exploitation movies. It's not supposed to be deep or, story-wise, impressive in any way. It should be the exact opposite, which it is! Cameron said 3D 'cheapens' the storywriting, which baffled me seeing that Avatar was all about the technology and visuals and never about the story. I really liked Avatar, don't get me wrong, but it was a great movie because of its exterior. Take that away and what you're left with is pretty effin' thin. Cameron should realise he doesn't own the 3-D technology and shouldn't bash other (critically acclaimed) directors for using it too. Using 3-D in a horror flick makes perfect sense, it'll scare people even more.

  46. 46

    Re: curiousred – No you have. Check facts and numbers. Piranha 3-D actually gets good reviews. Most people get the exploitation factor.

  47. @v@ says – reply to this


    Confus-us say Cameron-san head so big that gratuitous sideways jabs at fun movie Pirhanha 3D is just huge ego muffin-top love handle spillover.

  48. 48

    James Cameron has 2 billion reasons he's perfectly in touch with what the "common moviegoer" wants to, and will pay to, see.

  49. 49

    Re: Jaded – therapy, yes! but, a hug? since both of them treat women as inferior creatures, and have a history of cheating on their loved ones, i wouldn't be offering up hugs to either one of them.

  50. 50

    Re: @v@ – ROFLOL. You nailed it!

  51. 51

    Re: kobenmbr1ovrjordanRe: @v@ – ROFLOL. You nailed it!