James Cameron revealed the Oscar-winning actress held her breath for an extraordinary length of time while training for Avatar 2

By Alexia Fernandez
February 08, 2019 08:10 PM
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Kate Winslet was “gung-ho” about giving the best performance she could for James Cameron‘s upcoming Avatar sequel.

The director, 64, revealed the Oscar-winning actress, 43, “was a phenomenal collaborator and just so gung-ho” about preparing for her role as Ronal, a free-diving member of the Pandoran race, in Avatar 2.

The film required underwater scenes that Winslet had to prep for, Cameron told Vulture.

“She was really excited about doing the water work and at her peak, I think she held her breath for seven-and-a-half minutes – not during the scene but just during the training,” he said. “She was regularly doing two-or-three minute scenes, underwater acting and swimming.”

Cameron added, “She truly embraced the physicality of the character.”

“She was a dream to work with — not the pain in the a— that she was the first time,” he joked. “No, she was a dream on Titanic as well.”

Kate Winslet
Rich Fury/Getty

The longest a human being has held their breath is 24 minutes and three seconds, with the record going to Spanish freediver Aleix Segura Vendrell in 2016, according to the Guinness World Records.

The average amount of time human beings can hold their breath is about two minutes.

Winslet joins Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Sam Worthington, Oona Chaplin, Stephen Lang and David Thewlis in the sequel to Cameron’s 2009 fantasy action film.

Cameron may be reuniting with Winslet in the film, but he says it might take a while to collaborate again with his other Titanic star Leonardo DiCaprio.

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“Leo and I collide mostly in the environmental circles because he’s doing a lot of good work around climate change and the environment and stability,” Cameron said. “And I like to think I’m doing my part in that, although we’re not collaborating.”

Cameron added he would “absolutely” work with DiCaprio, 44, in the future.

“It’s a no-brainer for me. I just haven’t gone as far as to write a character for him specifically,” he said.

Avatar 2 is scheduled for release in December 2020.