Eight years ago, writer/director James Cameron released a little movie Avatar. It was a groundbreaking effort and a massive success, quickly becoming the highest grossest film of all time. Studio executives were hungry for a sequel, and just when it seemed things were coming together, it turns out we’re going to have to wait a bit longer.
20th Century Fox originally slated Avatar 2 for release in December 2018, with additional sequels to come in 2020, 2022, and 2023. In a new interview, however, Cameron says things are not going to happen that quickly after all.
There is a good reason for the delay, though. These sequels aren’t being planned in succession; they’re going to be filmed all at once. That means the scripts, casting, production design, and more have to be in place for four movies.
Cameron says he is knee-deep in pre-production on all four films, though, and expects it to take over his life 24 hours a day in the near future.
Earlier this year, Avatar star Sam Worthington said he’d seen drafts of the sequel scripts and described Avatar 2 as being like “nothing you’ve ever seen.”
While we may not see a sequel anytime soon, there is some new Avatar-related excitement coming later this year. Pandora – The World of Avatar is a new themed area inside Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.
The new 12-acre attraction will open on May 27, 2017 and will include familiar scenery from the film, include the floating islands and bioluminescent plants.
The big question surrounding the future Avatar sequels is: will audiences even care? Sure, the original was a resounding success and still holds the title of highest-grossing film ever made (although Gone with the Wind takes top honors when you adjust for inflation).
But the groundbreaking special effects and 3D technology used in Avatar were the real attractions, and those aspects are no longer guaranteed to pack in audiences the way they did in 2008.