For some reason, James Cameron (director of Titanic and Avatar) and his visit to the oil sands in Alberta has been making the news pretty consistently over the last few days.

Am I missing something here? Who gives a crap about his opinion on such things? Does he have some sort of expertise that I’m not aware of? Why are we holding press conferences to hear his opinion after three whole days of touring the area?

I don’t get the whole celebrity champion for a cause thing. They don’t know ANYTHING!! I get that it can bring attention to a cause because of their celebrity status. Sure, we can use them as spokespeople…I guess…if you’re into that kind of thing and somehow have great respect for these people. But, when they take it upon themselves to “investigate” an issue and then hold press conferences about it? Come ON, people! Should we really be taking their opinions to heart on such matters?

Maybe celebrities should stick to their day jobs, and let us scientists do our thing too.


Comments on: "Director/Environmentalist?" (5)

  1. I agree with you in general, though James Cameron has been much more involved with science and scientists than your average celebrity, particularly in deep sea exploration. He produced IMAX movies on hydrothermal vent biology and geology ( and exploration of the Titanic. He's currently building a sub to reach the bottom of the Mariana Trench (only done once before, 50 years ago) and is working with NASA to design cameras for the Mars Science Laboratory.


  2. I heard about this on the radio yesterday and also wondered what the deal was. It reminded me of Kevin Costner designing his own system for plugging up that blown pipeline in the Gulf a few months back. In that case, though, his efforts probably should have been taken more seriously since he clearly put more thought into it than BP did 😉


  3. I was just about to say something like the anon commentator. JC was very involved in the Gulf oil spill, mainly sicne he had some technical knowledge and sub/cameras that could go down to the depth and try and take pics of the borken oil pipe… now, BP didn't really want that too much…

    Anyhow,in this case it might be partly because he has a LOT of money and have been known to spend it on science and environmental issues. Especially Avatar made him a bit of “trying to be a good guy”… although, I don't know how deep it is, but he has been involved in some stuff outside of film industry.

    Might have to do with something that he's already “proven” himself with movies and now he can be famous for something else too?*

    *I'm not bitter but I do think there is something in the personality/traits if you are a super famous rich director who is used to getting it your way… and you want to stay on top? plus, I didn't get the feeling ppl (hollywood) liked him at the oscars so he might want to branch out?

    (all unsocilicted gossip of course 😉 I know nothing about this. Apart from the oil spill.)


  4. I actually get a lot more upset when it's celebrities pushing causes that are not scientifically sound, e.g., Jenny McCarthy's anti-vaccine campaign.


  5. I”m with micro Dr. O. If it raises awareness of scientifically sound stuff, I'm ok with it. Its more the Jenny McGarthy, Oparah's of the world who don't know shit about what they're talking about. JC actually does communcate with scientists.


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