Just when you thought the debate about the highest-grossing movie in history was over, in steps James Cameron. The Academy Award-winning filmmaker isn’t exactly known for his shy and retiring personality, and it seems that he hasn’t handled Avengers: Endgame overtaking Avatar‘s record with much grace or dignity.
For someone as driven as Cameron, it probably bothers him that he’s no longer the man behind the biggest box office hit of all-time, having held the top spot for over two decades thanks to Titanic and then Avatar. In fact, for the longest time it was believed that the latter’s $2.789 billion haul was virtually unassailable, given that no contenders had even managed to come within even $700 million of his Pandora-set adventure’s mammoth total.
In a recent interview, Cameron was asked if he thought that re-releasing Avatar in an effort to drum of interest in the upcoming sequel would see the movie reclaim top spot from Endgame, and he wasn’t shy in making it known that it would be a foregone conclusion.
“I think it’s a certainty. But let’s give Endgame their moment and let’s celebrate that people are going to the movie theater.”
If you thought that sounded as though the Terminator creator was starting to take things a little too personally, he went on to admit that he’d even gone so far as to do the calculations to figure out exactly how much the concluding chapter of the Infinity Saga managed to outscore him by.
“I don’t want to sound snarky after I took the high road. But they beat us by one quarter of a percent. I did the math in my head while driving this morning. I think accountants call that a rounding error.”
In Cameron’s defense, the margins are incredibly fine, with Endgame taking the record by less than $8 million, and it would be fair to assume that a re-release of Avatar would comfortably bring in more than that amount and give him back his title as director of the highest-grossing movie in history. Whether or not the long-awaited sequels can come anywhere close to those numbers though is entirely up for debate at this point.