Vanity Fair‘s John Lopez has gotten hold of an early draft of James Cameron‘s Oscar acceptance speech, should fortune smile. Except it’s not funny. We all know the cocky “king of the world” Cameron but that was codefied 12 years ago. Which means the Lopez thing is similar to someone repeating the old Marlon Brando-as-Marc-Antony joke (“Friends, Romans, Countrymen — I got sumpin’ I wanna tell youse”) in 1965, or twelve years after Joseph L. Mankieweicz‘s Julius Ceasar.

I’m not trying to be dull or unresponsive, but there’s simply more to Cameron than this. People resent the scope of Avatar‘s success (the haters are out in force like they were in ’98 after Titanic‘s worldwide blitzkrieg), but he’s just not the asshat that some people used to claim he was. If he were Lopez’s riff might be half-funny. Cameron up-close is a little bit like Buckminster Fuller or Arthur C. Clarke. He’s also a metaphor for what it takes to produce something really grand and far-reaching that connects with people worldwide. You can’t smiley-face and soft-shoe-shuffle your way to where Avatar is today..

I know it kinda hurts to write something that feels funny (and which your office homies insist is funny) only to hear the opposite from someone like myself. I’m sorry. I mean none harm.