James Cameron's new blockbuster movie Avatar won a "black lung" rating for gratuitous smoking from the Web site Scenesmoking.org, which rates motion pictures according to the amount of smoking they show. Avatar is a futuristic fantasy that takes place sometime in the 22nd century. In it, Sigourney Weaver plays an environmental scientist who puffs on cigarettes as she tries to save the moon Pandora. Cameron responded to the accusation of gratuitous smoking in Avatar by saying that smoking is a "filthy habit" that he does not support, but that smoking in movies is necessary to portray reality:
...[S]peaking as an artist, I don't believe in the dogmatic idea that no one in a movie should smoke. Movies should reflect reality.
Stanton Glantz, director of the University of California San Francisco's Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, says the smoking scenes in Avatar hand millions of dollars' worth of free advertising to cigarette makers, and points out that the very idea of a chain-smoking environmental scientist is in itself a gratuitous bit of fantasy.