Stephen Lang's Quaritch is set for a complicated time in the forthcoming series of Avatar sequels, according to the actor himself. James Cameron's original 2009 Avatar movie famously went on to become one of the most commercially successful films of all time and kickstarted the recent trend of 3D technology in cinemas. The environmentalist tale of greedy businessmen looking to pillage the foreign moon of Pandora of its natural resources, with no regard for the indigenous Na'vi tribe, featured Lang in a main antagonist role. Lang's Colonel Quaritch would stop at nothing to obtain the unobtainium and that steely determination ultimately resulted in his death.
Naturally, talk of sequels followed, but development on the follow-ups has been a slow process, with details, dates and plans constantly in a state of flux. It has, however, been confirmed that two Avatar sequels are currently in production, the first of which is set for release in December 2020. A further two movies are also being planned, should Avatar 2 and 3 prove successful. Cameron has also spoken at length about Avatar 2's largely underwater setting - something that he had planned from the very beginning - and, despite his character's death in the first film, Lang is confirmed to be returning for duty as Miles Quaritch.
Lang recently discussed his return to the Avatar world with SlashFilm and said believes his character is in for some complex development in the forthcoming sequel:
"I can tell you that we’re deeply, deeply into the shooting. We’re by no means finished. Quaritch, his place in this particular universe has gotten more complicated. And that’s kind of the extent of his involvement in the world. The world begins to – the world of Pandora – begins to affect him quite deeply in ways that he either refused or it did not affect him. And it gets under his skin.”
There are two main questions surrounding Quaritch's return in Avatar 2. The first is obviously how the character returns from the dead and the second is what the future could hold for the real-life Major Chip Hazard after he was soundly beaten in the first movie. Lang's comments regarding Quaritch being affected in ways he previously refused could be interpreted as hinting towards his character turning into more of a protagonist, perhaps becoming more attuned to the ways of Pandora and the Na'vi in future films. However, this would contradict statements previously made by Cameron that claimed Quaritch would continue to act as the franchise's main villain.
With this in mind, maybe Quaritch will experience the moon of Pandora in a previously unseen way. The first movie demonstrated how the Na'vi use the Tree of Souls to connect with their ancestors and can anchor humans into Avatar bodies, even after death. It seems unlikely that this is how Quaritch will be revived but perhaps there's another, more aggressive tribe out there who would benefit from the villain's military experience and who might want to make Quaritch their very own Jake Sully. Given Quaritch's prejudice towards the blue folk, this may well prove to be the source of the complications Lang's character will experience in Avatar 2.
- Avatar 2 (2021) release date: Dec 17, 2021
- Avatar 3 (2023) release date: Dec 22, 2023
- Avatar 4 (2025) release date: Dec 19, 2025
- Avatar 5 (2027) release date: Dec 17, 2027