Will ‘Avatar’ Take-off at the Box Office?

BY Molly Finnegan  December 18, 2009 at 4:14 PM EDT

Opening Friday nationwide is James Cameron’s latest epic cinematic and technical feat. “Avatar,” a digital 3-D action adventure movie about human colonization of a distant moon already occupied by a race of blue aliens.

Costing nearly $400 million for production and marketing, Avatar is among the most expensive films ever made, leading to a lot of interest and speculation about whether it will be able to make the money back, let alone turn a profit. But early reports suggest this will be a big opening weekend for the film, which has so far garnered positive reviews from critics like Roger Ebert and David Denby.

On Art Beat, Jeffrey Brown talks about James Cameron with biographer Rebecca Keegan, and you can find a conversation with the professor who invented the “Avatar” alien language Na’vi.