James Francis Cameron CC (born August 16, 1954) is a Canadian filmmaker, engineer and environmentalist. He is best known for making science fiction and epic films for the Hollywood mainstream. Cameron first gained recognition for directing The Terminator (1984). He found further critical and commercial success with Aliens (1986), The Abyss (1989), Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), and the comedy thriller True Lies (1994). His other big-budget productions include Titanic (1997) and Avatar (2009), with the former earning him Academy Awards in Best Picture, Best Director and Best Film Editing. Avatar, filmed in 3D technology, also garnered him nominations in the same categories.
He co-founded production companies Lightstorm Entertainment, Digital Domain and Earthship Productions. In addition to filmmaking, he is a National Geographic sea explorer and has produced a number of documentaries on the subject, including Ghosts of the Abyss (2003) and Aliens of the Deep (2005). Cameron has also contributed to underwater filming and remote vehicle technologies and helped create the digital 3D Fusion Camera System. In 2012, Cameron became the first person to perform a solo descent to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the Earth's ocean, in the Deepsea Challenger submersible.
In total, Cameron's films have grossed approximately US$2 billion in North America and US$6 billion worldwide. Avatar and Titanic are the second and third highest-grossing films of all time, earning $2.78 billion and $2.19 billion, respectively. As of 2020, Cameron holds the achievement of having directed the first two of the five films in history to gross over $2 billion worldwide. In 2010, Time magazine named Cameron as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. Cameron is also an environmentalist and runs several sustainability businesses.