Nobody was credited alongside James Cameron as the screenwriter for Avatar, particularly given the way he's talked up the project as his 15-year labor of love, but Shutter Island writer Laeta Kalogridis in fact had a major hand in crafting the screenplay, and was given an executive producer credit for her trouble. It's really probably best that way-- Avatar's screenplay was mocked even by the film's biggest defenders, and Cameron is repaying her with something maybe slightly less cool than writing credit on history's biggest movie: more work.

According to THR kalogridis has been hired to take the latest crack at the script for The Fantastic Voyage, which has been in development at Fox for years now, with Roland Emmerich and Paul Greengrass both attached at some point. Cameron is only on board as a producer, alongside his producing pal Jon Landau, and this is the first major progress since he came on board (aside from Greengrass bailing). Sign of forward movement, or just an inexorable next step in a process that will never actually end?

Fantastic Voyage, of course, started as a 1966 sci-fi film about a team of scientists who are shrunk down to miniature size in order to enter the body of an escaped Soviet scientist and save his life. It's both a classical sci-fi adventure story and completely absurd, but I kind of like the idea of someone as earnest as Cameron behind it-- this will be no post-irony adventure story, that's for sure. With Kalogridis on board Cameron is clearly assembling a team of collaborators he likes and should be able to make this his own-- no matter how many layers of old paint will be underneath what we finally see.

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