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Q&A on Botany in James Cameron's "Avatar"


UC Riverside Botanist to Answer Public’s Questions About Plants She Helped Describe in James Cameron’s “Avatar”

During Q&A on Dec. 19 at Ontario Palace Stadium 22 & IMAX, UC Riverside’s Jodie Holt will discuss how she brought credibility to film’s extraterrestrial ecosystem

(December 15, 2009)

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Jodie Holt is the chair of the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences at UC Riverside.  Photo credit: UCR Strategic Communications.  Watch a short interview <a href=here in which Holt talks about her involvement with the film Avatar." height="133" width="200" />Enlarge

Jodie Holt is the chair of the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences at UC Riverside. Photo credit: UCR Strategic Communications. Watch a short interview here in which Holt talks about her involvement with the film Avatar.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The public has an opportunity to meet and speak with Jodie Holt, the scientist who provided botanical expertise for Pandora, the extraterrestrial moon in James Cameron’s new film Avatar.

Holt will participate in a Q&A at 6:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 19, at the Edwards Ontario Palace Stadium 22 & IMAX, 4900 East Fourth Street, Ontario, Calif.

The Q&A will be held in the IMAX theater lobby. It will be followed by a IMAX 3D presentation of the film at 7 p.m.

The event is being hosted by the Regal Entertainment Group, which plans to give away movie posters, T-shirts and character toys during the Q&A.

Holt, a professor of plant physiology at the University of California, Riverside, used her knowledge of botany to help the filmmakers portray Pandora’s vegetation credibly.

For the plants that appear in the film’s game products, Holt provided biological descriptions and ecological details. She also mentored Sigourney Weaver in portraying a botanist in the film, which opens worldwide Dec. 18.

For more details, click here.

Watch a short interview here in which Holt talks about how she helped describe Pandora’s ecosystem.

At UC Riverside, Holt chairs the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences and conducts research on the ecology of weedy and invasive plants.

She is a coauthor of Ecology of Weeds and Invasive Plants: Relationship to Agriculture and Natural Resource Management. She is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA). At the WSSA, she serves as an associate editor of the journal, Invasive Plant Science and Management. She received the UCR Distinguished Teaching Award for 2008-09.
Jodie Holt at the Ontario Palace Stadium 22 & IMAX, where, on Dec. 19, she answered the public's questions on how she lent credibility to the plants seen in the film <i>Avatar</i>.Enlarge

Jodie Holt at the Ontario Palace Stadium 22 & IMAX, where, on Dec. 19, she answered the public's questions on how she lent credibility to the plants seen in the film Avatar.

The University of California, Riverside (www.ucr.edu) is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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