When Avatar became the highest-grossing movie of all time in 2009 and changed 3-D cinema forever, the guarantee of a sequel was all but confirmed. In the past six years, four more sequels have been green-lit, and as James Cameron continues to work on his visual masterpiece, we wait with bated breath for the next installment. The wait, it seems, is becoming a long one, but as the saying goes, good things come to those who wait.
The Avatar saga will play out across five movies, and it seems the original installment was designed to lay the groundwork and introduce us to the expansive characters and the lush, picturesque world of Pandora. With an epic of this magnitude, having five films to play the story out is not a luxury many directors are awarded, but this is James Cameron, and he not only invents cinema, but he also pioneers it.
As the buzz for the first sequel starts to bubble, Sigourney Weaver took time out of an interview to update us on the sequels and give us a hint of what is to come. According to the veteran actress, we should get excited because James Cameron is just getting started. Be warned, spoilers for Avatar are mentioned below.
During an interview with Variety, Sigourney Weaver confirmed that the first Avatar movie was exactly that; an introduction to the four movies to follow. While discussing A Monster Calls, her latest release, she revealed the following about the Avatar sequels.
“In my opinion, the three scripts I’ve read so far are many times more amazing than the first one in terms of their scope. He did a lot of the heavy lifting in the first movie, establishing the family and the relationships and the world, and now he really gets to play.”
If there was one minor flaw with Avatar, it was the restriction that James Cameron had in regards to the film itself. If you consider the complex, expansive world of Pandora, not to mention the plethora of characters and the layered plot, there’s a lot going on. Cameron nailed the execution in the first film, but it was obvious he was following a simple formula to introduce the characters and story to the viewers without overburdening them. For a three-hour movie, there is a lot going on, but due to Cameron’s need to establish the universe in a way that seemed simple, you felt that the director was held back. However, now that is out of the way, and Weaver said it herself; he’s off the leash, and few things in Hollywood are as exciting as that.
As a result of the first film, we now know why humans are on Pandora; we have familiarity with the technology of the future, and we know of the families that inhabit the beautiful world. With this established, James Cameron can start introducing new elements, and with an unknown world like Pandora at his fingertips, the possibilities are endless. What will become of Jake Sully, Neytiri, and their children? Will humans destroy the wonderful land of the planet? In Avatar, Jake’s mind was permanently transferred to his avatar Na’vi body before his human body passed away, so now he lives among Pandora’s native race. With his human entity gone, how will this translate to the sequels? So many questions remain following Avatar, but Cameron has four epic films to answer them. It could truly reinvent cinema as we know it.
As for Sigourney Weaver’s character Dr. Grace Augustine, she also died in the previous movie. The actress has been confirmed for the sequels, so her part remains unclear. Whether her character is resurrected or she plays another character remains to be seen. One thing is clear, though; with the world of Avatar established, James Cameron is gearing up to unleash a game-changer of a cinema ride on us. Remember, the last two times he did that he produced the highest grossing movie of all time on both occasions. A performance record like that doesn’t lie.
Avatar 2 is yet to receive an official release date, but according to Game N Guide, 20th Century Fox announced that an untitled Lightstorm Entertainment movie would be released on December 21, 2018. This could be Avatar 2, but nothing is confirmed. Watch this space for more information.
[Featured Image by 20th Century Fox]