Before you get your hopes up: Yes, James Cameron and Kate Winslet are working on a movie sequel together, and no, it is not a sequel to Titanic. Production has begun on Cameron’s much-touted (and equally maligned) Avatar sequels, and Winslet has reportedly signed on for Avatar 2 to play the character Ronal.
“Kate and I have been looking for something to do together for 20 years, since our collaboration on Titanic, which was one of the most rewarding of my career,” Cameron said in a press release.
For Titanic enthusiasts and/or people who were able to get past the Avatar font and enjoy the biggest box office hit of all time, this is exciting news. (The sequels really are happening, it seems!) But the idea that Cameron and Winslet have been hoping to reunite for two decades is more than a little surprising, considering the general narrative of their experience on Titanic.
In a 2004 episode of Inside the Actors Studio, Winslet commented at length on the difficulties of shooting Titanic and working with Cameron, whom she called “a perfectionist.” Working with him “would occasionally involve, you know, outbursts … if he was angry that something wasn’t working, or things were taking too long.” It goes on for several minutes:
Winslet was quick to mention that Cameron was also a “genius” and a “decent man,” but her negative comments were widely circulated after the interview. She has spoken at length in years since about the difficulties of shooting the film and its constant influence on her life—so much so that Cameron responded in a 2012 interview with Moviefone, saying, “It’s been 16 years. Like, come on, Kate. Get over it. Take the win, girl!”
Given the news today, it seems that Winslet and Cameron have moved on enough to give their partnership another go. Or, like the millions of us who saw Avatar in theaters, maybe they’ve just forgotten the majority of the experience altogether.