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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

question of the day: If James Cameron can’t fix the BP oil spill, to whom shall we turn next?

Oh, yeah, we thought it was a joke when Michael Bay asked Bruce Willis to fly up into space and nuke an asteroid heading straight for us, but this is the real deal. Via the Washington Post:

“Avatar” and “Titanic” director James Cameron on Wednesday evening criticized those responsible for stopping the geyser of oil flowing into the Gulf of Mexico and again offered the assistance of the private team of deep-sea experts with whom which he has worked on several underwater films and exploration efforts.

“Wait a minute, I know a lot of smart people in deep submergence,” Cameron said he thought as the Gulf crisis deepened. “Why don’t I just get all these people that I know together for a brainstorming session?”

Cameron told the audience that on Tuesday he had gathered 23 people — a “who’s who” of the deep sea robotics community — together through the auspices of the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, though no one from the EPA attended the meeting at the agency’s headquarters.

Four other federal agencies also took part in the “listening session,” a spokesperson for the EPA said, including the Department of Energy, the United States Coast Guard, the White House Council on Environmental Quality and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.

Actually, wait a sec — maybe Cameron is on to something here:

Cameron said he has not been in touch with anyone from the White House, and that earlier proffers of assistance he had made to BP were rebuffed.

“They could not have been more gracious but they basically said, ‘We’ve got this,'” he said.

Cameron said one reason he hoped his offer of access to private film-equipped deep-water vehicles would be taken up was to more accurately convey what was happening under water.

“The government really needs to have its own independent ability to go down there and image the site, survey the site and do its own investigation and monitor it,” Cameron said. “Because if you’re not monitoring it independently, you’re asking the perpetrator to give you the video of the crime scene.”

If James Cameron can’t fix the BP oil spill, to whom shall we turn next? Perhaps instead of the nuclear option, Tony Stark could seal the leak with that laser ray thingie he shoots out of the palm of the Iron Man suit? Maybe we could just plug the busted pipe with the bloated ego of Simon Cowell? (Hollywood.com has a few more ideas…) What’s the Hollywood ending of this disaster? And please make me laugh here, because I’m looking at pictures of oil-covered birds, and I’m about to lose it…

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)



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  • Superman. Bending the vents shut with his bare hands. And then sucking up all the oil in a spinning vortex that get funneled up to a Waynetech refinery floating in orbit because, you know, Batman always has a plan.

  • Brian

    As of press time, Spongebob Squarepants could not be reached for comment.

  • Funwithheadlines

    MacGruber, of course…

  • AlsoKT

    Well obviously all we need to do is get some suitably ethnic Earthlings and one white dude to plug their hair into a big tree and ask very nicely and then the Earth will send an army of dolphins to plug the leak.

    I’ll take my two billion dollars in small bills and gift cards, thanks.

  • Orangutan

    MacGruber, of course…

    What’s he gonna do, offer to suck the pipe dry?

  • Orangutan

    Apologies for the double-post, but this is so very appropriate and amusing: http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2010/6/4/

  • marshall

    People are acting like James Camerous himself is going to hop in a boat and just take care of this – he’s not. Because of the work he’s done with the Titanic, he knows very knowledgable people in the field of deep underwater robotics and submersabels – he’s trying to help get these people into the mix to help solve this thing and yet, we’re being snarky when I don’t really think it’s due. In other words, James Cameron himself isn’t going to fix the oil pipe, but he knows people who can help. There isn’t anything wrong with that.

  • bronxbee

    “Because if you’re not monitoring it independently, you’re asking the perpetrator to give you the video of the crime scene.”

    exactly. this is like the burglar who came in and ransacked your home, destroyed your livelihood and assaulted you then saying “by the way, don’t worry, i’ll fix that window… oh, and the rug stain too!”

    jeez, WHY are we letting BP dictate the terms here? if JC’s got people who can fix this — or at least brain storm something that can fix this — then let him get it done! our government is throwing away any future for our fishing industry, our wildlife and our resorts just to placate BP. i’m willing to let bruce willis hit the fucking thing with a hammer if that’s what it takes to make it work!

  • CB

    Cameron said one reason he hoped his offer of access to private film-equipped deep-water vehicles would be taken up was to more accurately convey what was happening under water.

    Gee, and I wonder why BP blew him off?

    BP has every incentive to fix this as quickly as possible, but they also have every incentive to downplay the consequences and prevent access to people who might discover that their (relatively) rosy picture of things is bullshit.

    I mean we already know the 5,000 bbl/day figure was BS, and that was already an increase from 2,000 bbl/day that they claimed at first but didn’t hold any water. They blocked scientists from studying the spill and underwater oil as long as possible, but as soon as the scientists got to work the evidence screamed that the problem was much bigger than thought, and most of the oil wasn’t on the surface.

    There is some logic behind the reasoning that BP needs to fix the spill because a) they caused it and b) they are best equipped to do so. I mean one thing is clear — nobody on earth has done this before, and there’s only a handful of companies who even have the hypothetical capability and expertise.

    But while it may make sense to let BP run repair operations, it doesn’t make any damn sense at all to let BP restrict access to scientists and the media!

    Hopefully, though, with a criminal investigation underway, that’s going to change and BP is going to be being watched so closely they’ll feel like they’re getting a colonoscopy.

  • LaSargenta

    Well, at least the oil-soaked birds wouldn’t have the oil if these instructions would have been followed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LrOYoE-Hrp4

    Salty language. Reminds me of what I use when I lose my temper at drillers on my jobs occasionally. Of course, I deal with piles going potentially into aquifers with high hydrostatic pressure. I might get a mud boil; I don’t run the risk of poisoning hundreds of miles of sea coast.

    I liked all of the above ideas for plugging it. Maybe all those egos at once would do the job.

  • doa766

    uwe boll is next in line, his ideas are better than the ones that Michael Bay and Roland Emmerich came up with

  • bronxbee

    the other night Neil DeGrasse Tyson said, “why aren’t they trying to siphon all that oil into a barge or something? isn’t that what they drilled down there to find?”

    crikey, in real life they managed to bring three men back from the moon using square boxes, a hose and duct tape. these guys are just screw ups — and lousy engineers — and bordering on criminals.

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