LOS ANGELES —
Hollywood became sold on the idea once millions of fans started shelling out a few extra dollars to see new blockbusters in 3-D. So far, a handful of older films have come out in digital 3-D versions, among them "The Lion King," which pulled in $94.2 million to raise its lifetime domestic haul to $423.2 million and Lucas' "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace," which added $43.1 million to lift its total to $474.2 million.
"Titanic" never played or barely showed in some big markets such as Russia and China, and fans now in their teens have only had a chance to see it on small screens, Cameron said. That gives it a good prospect to narrow some of the billion-dollar gap between its worldwide gross and that of "Avatar."
"It only needs to make, worldwide, $160 million to break the $2 billion mark, of which there would only be two films in that club at that point. Mine and mine," Cameron said, laughing. (In fairness to older flicks, such hits as "Gone with the Wind," "The Sound of Music" and "Star Wars" would have made more money than "Avatar" or "Titanic," adjusted for inflation.)
"The goal here is not about making money with 'Titanic.' The goal is to put the film back into cinemas so that people that either loved it back then and haven't had a chance to see it in a movie theater since can go see it. Or people who only know it from video can see it for the first time on a theater screen. I don't make movies for iPhones or tablets. I like to think that there's still a sanctity in the cinema experience."