Sam Worthington Reveals ‘Avatar’ Sequels Filming Start Date

Published 2 years ago by

avatar 2 3 4 filming start date Sam Worthington Reveals Avatar Sequels Filming Start Date

James Cameron never fails to go for the gusto with his movie projects, so although it came as a surprise earlier this year when the news broke that Cameron intends to make three Avatar sequels back-to-back-to-back – rather than two followups, as was reportedly the original plan – it didn’t exactly rock the industry or shock movie lovers around the world. (At least, not anymore than when Peter Jackson decided to turn The Hobbit into a trilogy after principal photography had wrapped – to cite an appropriate example for comparison.)

The second installment in the planned Avatar quadrilogy is expected to reach theaters by 2016, which is a year later than the film was originally slated to arrive. Leading man-turned-Na’vi Sam Worthington has lent further credibility to the new theatrical date, by revealing the expected start date for production on Avatar 2, followed thereafter by Avatar 3 and Avatar 4 (official subtitles – or lack thereof – TBD).

Worthington was recently on the breakfast show for Australian radio station Nova 96.9 (hat tip to Yahoo!), where he revealed that Avatar 2 will begin shooting by October 2014, with the third and fourth installment filming immediately thereafter; in total, principal photography should amount to about a year in length. The Avatar 2 portion of production could be the most physically strenuous for Worthington and his fellow cast members (including, Zoe Saldana back as Neytiri), since that film is supposed to take place in no small amount in the oceans of Pandora – and thus, will require revolutionary motion capture photography to create the all-digital underwater environment (just ask Sandra Bullock and George Clooney how easy it was acting in the similar all-digital version of space during production on Gravity).

avatar 2 details Sam Worthington Reveals Avatar Sequels Filming Start Date

Furthermore, Worthington indicated that Cameron has by and large finished with the screenwriting process on Avatar 2, since the filmmaker is currently head-down in the middle of pre-production and preparatory work a solid year before shooting begins. That makes sense, given that Cameron has also recruited four different screenwriters – Josh Friedman (War of the Worlds (2005)), husband-wife writing partners Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) and Shane Salerno (Armageddon) – to work on scripts for the Avatar sequels. Friedman is assisting on the Avatar 2 script, while the other writers help put together screenplays for Parts 3 and 4, respectively.

However, Cameron’s approach makes it difficult to gauge when additional casting announcements will be made for the next three Avatar movies, seeing how much time we have until production actually commences. So far, we’ve gotten semi-official confirmation that Avatar leads Worthington and Saldana are getting ready to return in the new installments, alongside Sigourney Weaver in some as-yet unspecified capacity. However, the sole new casting addition rumor so far, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has been denied by Fox (which doesn’t mean it’s not true, though).

avatar sequels 48fps Sam Worthington Reveals Avatar Sequels Filming Start Date

Avatar grossed nearly $2.8 billion in theaters worldwide and won a couple Oscars in the process, but thus far it feels like most of the interest in the sequels has been more oriented towards the doors they will open from a technological perspective – like how the underwater mo-cap photography in Avatar 2 will increase the odds of an Aquaman movie becoming a reality in the future – rather than, the content of the stories that Cameron intends to tell hereon out.

The creative achievements of Gravity has put even more pressure on Cameron to deliver a more captivating and innovative narrative this next round, since it will be more difficult for the films to coast on their technical accomplishments alone. In all fairness, though, the filmmaker is well aware that he needs to step his game up and make the next trip to Pandora (not to mention, the long delay until takeoff) seem worth it – and, frankly, at this point, everyone ought to know better than to bet against Cameron.


Avatar 2 is expected to reach theaters in December 2016, followed by Avatar 3 in 2017 and Avatar 4 in 2018.

Source: Yahoo!

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  1. Variety reports that Avatar 2 is slated for a December 2016 release, to be specific.

    • Fair point, I updated the article with that tidbit.

      Thanks for the catch!

  2. I expect Cameron to deliver visuals again not seen before.
    At least for Avatar 2. By Avatar 4 technology will have moved
    beyond what James is using to capture it in. 2018 is a ways away.

    Apart from the technical, adding in story and screenwriting
    and overall logistics this is about as mammoth an
    underrating ever attempted in Hollywood.

  3. Avatar still remains the greatest 3D IMAX Spectacle of all time!!! Cant wait for The Aquatic visuals in the sequels.

    • I agree that “Avatar” revolutionized and brought forth the digital – IMAX 3D cinematic experience. As mediocre as it’s story was, “Avatar’s” visual spectacle cannot be denied.

      James Cameron deserves all credit for this.

      However, I’m thinking that Alfonso Cuaron’s “Gravity” has put “Avatar” in second place, not only in it’s IMAX/3D experience, but in it’s story telling.

  4. Avatar = Dances with wolves on a strange planet

    Avatar 2 = Waterworld on a strange planet

    Avatar 3 = Robin Hood on a strange planet

    Avatar 4 = Field of dreams where Sully ends up in his dead twin brothers body. “If you find it, he will come”

  5. Well, they are taking their sweet time with this.

  6. Yeah Ummm, uh-huh, sooo it’s taken 5 years to announce that you’re almost ready to start shooting this movie? I’ve almost completely lost interest in this franchise.

  7. While I though the visuals of Avatar where stunning I found the story to be a bit lackluster so hopefully the next one will combine both and bring us a great movie.

  8. We all know that once Avatar 2 comes out, everybody who said they hated it will be in the theaters to watch it. So, I wouldn’t be surprised if this breaks records again.

  9. Avator is a “good” sci-fi story and the best 3d visuals. Though the story had elements of Pochihantas, the movie was over-all what I expected from Cameron. I’m looking forward in seeing the sequels. The only empathsis is that the story isn’t dragged on for a four parter. The Hobbit, for an example, too much milking the cow makes for sour milk- save the “extended” version for blu-ray…and stop the double dipping already. Make it 1st time around or people will go file share until the studios stop stooping to this money grab.