Kevin Costner, James Cameron make splash in Gulf of Mexico

Hollywood might deliver real-world help in oil spill crisis

The ugly saga of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill has taken an unexpected twist, with two Hollywood luminaries entering the picture to offer technical expertise they developed while working on fictional movies about disasters.

Government officials met last week with director James Cameron, apparently to pick his brain about underwater filming and remote vehicle technologies, reports Matthew Daly of the Associated Press. Cameron, of course, is well known for the meticulous approach he took when filming the blockbuster “Titanic.” The meeting included representatives from the Energy Department, Environmental Protection Agency, Coast Guard and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Daly reports.

Kevin Costner, meanwhile, is providing the Coast Guard and BP with technology he developed for separating water and oil, according to Juli Weiner at Vanity Fair. Costner apparently developed the centrifugal oil separator in conjunction with DOE while working on the film “Waterworld,” which was something of a disaster in its own right.

“In hopes of helping contain the most recent oil catastrophe, BP and the U.S. Coast Guard will give six of the centrifugal oil separators a trial run — in other words, six degrees of oil separation,” Weiner writes.

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