James Cameron said it's "unlikely" that Avatar will take home the winnings at the Oscars.
The director said it was his ex-wife Kathryn Bigelow's "moment" - she is up for The Hurt Locker.
In an interview just published in Empire magazine, James said: "I always believe it's very unlikely that lightning will strike twice."
The director was interviewed before the Oscar nominations were announced, which sees Avatar up for nine awards.
He said: "If we get nominated, I believe it's very unlikely that we will win because I made such a jackass of myself last time. Although there might be some curiosity about what I might do."
James exclaimed "I'm king of the world" when he landed the best director gong for Titanic in 1998.
He added: "Hurt Locker is a very, very strong picture. Of the contenders that are being bandied about it, it's definitely the strongest.
"Certainly it's Kathryn's moment. I'm certain she'll get nominated and I would happily lose to her.
"I've already got one of those damn statues. I'd be p***ed off if somebody else won, but I wouldn't mind if she won."