Typically, studios and filmmakers like to strike when the iron is hot when it comes to developing franchises. James Cameron, however, operates quite differently. His sci-fi/fantasy blockbuster Avatar became the biggest film of all-time back in 2009, earning a whopping $2.7 billion at the worldwide box office and receiving much critical acclaim. The Oscar-winner plans to direct four followups in an ambitious undertaking, but they're taking a while to come into fruition as Cameron (ever the perfectionist) dedicates time to fine-tuning the scripts with his writing team. 20th Century Fox has penciled a December 2018 release for Avatar 2, but there's some uncertainty about meeting that date.
Things do seem to be moving in the right direction, as Cameron recently revealed his plan is to commence motion-capture photography with the actors this summer, meaning a long and grueling production process will finally begin in the next few months. Those involved with the project are very excited to get the ball rolling, including star Sam Worthington, who plays franchise lead Jake Sully.
Speaking with We Got This Covered, Worthington expressed enthusiasm about the stories Cameron has in mind, promising a one-of-a-kind cinematic experience that explores the characters in fresh and interesting ways:
“They’re going to be shooting concurrently. The plan is to have some time in between, I think, but these things are always ambiguous until they start. We’re still set to start in the summer, though. James needed time to perfect the scripts. Whenever he says jump I go because he’s the man. I’ve read all the scripts, they’re great. This is going to be Jake eight years later, and he’s got a family now.
This film is going to be like nothing you’ve ever seen. The world is bigger than the first one, but essentially, it’s a movie about family. Jake will still have that essence of a kid seeing the world for the first time, but he’s been living in the world for a while now, so what’s this world he’s seeing now for the first time? The film will explore that within this family dynamic.”
Nobody can deny the incredible technical achievements of the first Avatar, which was a true groundbreaker for special effects. That said, some moviegoers took issue with the movie's substance, writing the main narrative off as thin and derivative. The hope is that for the sequels, Cameron and his collaborators are able to craft more compelling arcs that enthrall filmgoers as much as the state-of-the-art visuals. Picking things up eight years after the original installment sounds like a good start, as it will place Jake and Neytiri in an interesting position as parents while new corners on Pandora are explored. The heroes being in this new position should provide Cameron with some strong material, especially when whatever threats they face start to emerge.
Since it looks like Avatar 2 is at long last going to become a reality, fans will be wondering when exactly Cameron's vision will be up on the big screen. It stands reason to believe that earlier December 2018 estimate won't come to pass, considering the sheer amount of post-production work required to get the sequel(s) up to the director's high standards. One possibility is 2019, coinciding with the first film's 10th anniversary. That said, Lucasfilm is aiming to debut Star Wars: Episode IX that year, so it will be fascinating to see where Fox places Avatar 2 amidst Jedi Knights, Earth's Mightiest, and the Justice League.
We'll keep you updated on Avatar 2 as more information becomes available.
Source: We Got This Covered