There are places on Earth with no human history or memories, as remote from us as a distant planet. The deep-sea trenches are such a place – the deepest points on the planet, shrouded in eternal darkness, and home to an ocean’s worth of scientific mysteries waiting to be solved.
Now, after years of painstaking work, a team of visionary engineers led by filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence James Cameron, has built a submersible that for the first time allows humans to visit the deepest part of this hidden world, deeper than Everest is high, the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean near Guam.
DEEPSEA CHALLENGE recounts the personal journey of Cameron and members of his engineering and science team as they prepare to make history, fulfilling lifelong dreams in the process. For Cameron, it is a journey told from within, with all his hopes and fears and dreams and frustrations laid bare. It offers a glimpse into the passion he shares with the mission’s scientists to better understand our world. And it shows what drove him, co-designer Ron Allum, and an international team working in Australia, to take on the seemingly impossible task.
Nine years in the making, from planning, engineering research, testing, filming the actual expedition and then completion of the film; having overcome technical challenges and profound personal tragedy along the way, Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge, all filmed in groundbreaking 3D, is now ready to be shared with the world.
At 10,900 metres (7 miles) deep, exploring the Mariana Trench is the ocean equivalent of scaling Everest or landing on the moon. And Cameron does it encased in a 109 cm diameter pilot’s chamber.