James Cameron’s epic Mariana Trench dive to be the subject of 3D documentary

James Cameron Deepsea ChallengerMovie director James Cameron has returned from his historic dive down into the Mariana Trench — Earth’s deepest known underwater point. Cameron’s solo trip was made possible using an Australian-built submarine named Deepsea Challenger, and the project has been sponsored by among others, The National Geographic Foundation and the filmmaker himself.

The Mariana Trench is more than six miles deep and 1,580 miles long. Only one other manned mission to explore it has been made, back in 1960, by Swiss oceanographer Jacques Piccard and US Navy Captain Don Walsh, who joined Cameron’s team of engineers aboard the support ship this weekend.

Squeezing into a cockpit measuring 43-inches wide, although the sub itself is 24-feet long, Cameron began his two-and-a-half hour descent early Monday morning, and explored the ocean floor for three hours before beginning his 70-minute ascent back to the surface.

He brought with him a variety of samples and a lot of film, as along with an array of scientific equipment, the Deepsea Challenger was kitted out with cameras and lighting rigs.

An underwater movie studio

Deepsea Challenger Submarine

James Cameron, a veteran of more than 70 dives using a submersible, is no stranger to filming underwater, having shot not only The Abyss (albeit in a very large tank) but also documentaries on the Bismarck and the Titanic.

The Deepsea Challenger was equipped with a Red Epic 5K 3D camera with a wide-angle lens, and it ran for almost the entire duration of the dive. The Red Epic was supported by four, custom-built, high-definition cameras, plus two boom-mounted cameras, one of which also captured 3D images.

One of the most vocal advocates of 3D technology, Cameron believes that not only will his film be visually impressive for theater audiences, but the use of the stereoscopic imagery will help scientists “determine the scale and distance” of the objects and creatures he encountered.

The on-board systems provided Mr. Cameron with enough control over the cameras and the sub’s huge 2.5-meter LED light tower to “direct” as he went along. A “cruise control” mode made shooting smooth tracking shots along the ocean floor far easier too.

Future dives and documentaries

Following the success of the dive, there’s every chance the Deepsea Challenger will make several return journeys, including one with a fiber-optic umbilical cord, so scientists will be able to study live images sent back from the sub.

James Cameron is expected to make at least one documentary film based on his incredible dive, although no release date has been stated, and there is also a rumor some of the footage shot in the Mariana Trench will make it into the sequel to Avatar, currently set for a 2016 release.

Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

Out of movies to binge? Our staff picks the best flicks on Hulu right now

From classics to blockbusters, Hulu offers some great films to its subscribers. Check out the best movies on Hulu, whether you're into charming adventure tales or gruesome horror stories.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix in October, from 'Mindhunter’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Netflix in October, from 'The Witch’ to ‘Black Panther’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, subdued humor, or anything in between.

From 'E.T." to 'Lord of the Rings,' these are the best movie soundtracks ever

Whether you're a lover of beautifully composed original scores or a fan of perfectly compiled popular music, these are the best movie soundtracks of all time — from Star Wars to Garden State.

Spooky movie streaming, a new 'Glass' trailer, and Snapchat TV?

This week on Between the Streams, we'll be discussing the best way to get your scares online, James Gunn's turn to the DC side of the comic universe, our most anticipated new TV series, the trailer for the Pet Sematary reboot, and much…
Movies & TV

‘Venom’ devours the box office competition with monstrous second weekend

Sony Pictures anti-superhero movie Venom won the weekend box office for the second straight week, beating musical drama A Star is Born, as well as three new releases that made it into the weekend's top ten movies.
Movies & TV

Stream till you scream with the best scary movies on Netflix, Hulu, and more

Need some ghoulish entertainment to get in the Halloween spirit? Check out some of the best horror movies streaming now. Whether you like creepy atmosphere or bloody jump scares, you'll find something to spook you.
Movies & TV

Stay inside this summer with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Castle Rock'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we've put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: ‘Glass,’ ‘Mortal Engines,’ ‘Pet Sematary’ and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. To simplify things, we round up the best ones each week. On tap this week: New trailers for Pet Sematary, Glass, Mortal Engines, and other upcoming films.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (October 2018)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: ‘The Haunting of Hill House’ and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: The Haunting of Hill House season 1, The Romanoffs, and more.
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best gear and gadgetry you can snag for $100 or less

A $100 bill can get you further than you might think -- so long as you know where to look. Check out our picks for the best tech under $100, whether you're in the market for headphones or a virtual-reality headset.
Home Theater

Dish Network or DirecTV: Which is the better choice for you?

So, you’ve chosen to go with a satellite television provider. Check out our quick rundown of what both Dish Network and DirecTV offer in terms of content, hardware, and pricing, and why you might choose them over streaming services.