James Cameron, the acclaimed director of “Titanic” and “Avatar”, took a day trip to what almost seems like another planet.
“My feeling was one of complete isolation from all of humanity,” Cameron said in an interview with the Associated Press. Cameron dove nearly seven miles in a submersible to the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean, east of the Mariana Islands, south of Japan. Two other divers had been in the same spot in 1960 and numerous robotic submersibles have gone down over time, but this is the first time a human has been alone for such a long period of time (three hours).
On Monday, snippets of Cameron’s footage from deep beneath the earth’s surface was released. Watch it below.
It took 2 and a half hours to descend all the way to the bottom. He was to gather specimens of ocean-bottom material and observe any life available for six hours, but his trip was cut short because of a hydraulic leak that obscured his vision and left his robotic arms useless. After three hours of exploration and a 45 minute ascent back to the top, Cameron was back on earth to describe the extreme feeling of isolation and his optimism about further explorations.
“I see this as the beginning. It’s not a one-time deal and then moving on. This is the beginning of opening up this new frontier,” Cameron said to Associated Press. “To me, the story is in the people in their quest and curiosity and their attempt to understand.”
Watch the video by National Geographic below to get a sense of just how far down he really went.
Photo: GNU Free Documentation License