It's been almost ten years since James Cameron's Avatar first delighted moviegoers and then went on to become the highest-grossing film of all time. The science-fiction film starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, and Sigourney Weaver took audiences to the far away planet of Pandora in the Alpha Centauri star system and introduced us to the tribe of aliens called Na'vi. Yet even though the world Cameron created is wondrous on its own, it's the film's use of stereoscopic 3D filmmaking that really allowed viewers to immerse themselves like never before.
Four sequels to Avatar are currently planned with the first debuting in December 2018 and then the rest every two or so years after that. Filming is scheduled to begin in early 2017, and all the sequels will be shot simultaneously, making the whole endeavor more like a miniseries. It's safe to say that we will soon start hearing a lot more about Avatar as Cameron and the actors go back into the world of Pandora. So there's no better time than now to preview Pandora: The World of Avatar, a new land based on the Avatar universe opening soon at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park in Florida.
We first got a peek at this new land back in April, when a video presentation focused heavily on the realistic world that will await visitors to Pandora: The World of Avatar. At the D23’s Destination D: Amazing Adventures event in Orlando, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek revealed new concept art and details for Pandora, which opens in summer 2017. Our first true glimpse of Pandora is a recently unmasked bridge that will connect the rest of the theme park with Alpha Centauri Expeditions, the eco-tour group that will send explorers on their Pandora adventure.
According to Attractions Magazine, the story is this bridge was built during the time when the destructive company RDA first came to Pandora. Now that they are long gone, nature is breaking down evidence of their presence. Below you can see the new bridge that will transport you away to Pandora, as well as concept art for other areas like Pongu Pongu, Windtraders and Satu’li Canteen:
The new land will include an Avatar-inspired drink location, store of exotic baubles and restaurant. In the first image, Pongu Pongu will be a special drink location with a design that is as eclectic as its Expat owner. Also pictures is a family-friendly attraction called Na’vi River Journey and new food & beverage and merchandise locations. In the second concept art, Windtraders is where travelers can find Na’vi cultural items, toys, science kits, and more. As for the last location, Satu’li Canteen will be the main restaurant and heart of Pandora, a place that features Na’vi art and cultural items.
By the time the first sequel of Avatar hits the big screen a lot of its younger viewers won't remember the original movie (if they were even alive when it was released). It's clear, however, that Cameron and 20th Century Fox are seeking a whole new set of fans with the four new films, while still hoping to recapture those who saw the original back in 2009. This new theme land at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Florida will recapture viewers' imaginations and prepare them for a whole new set of movies. Plus, Pandora is another precursor to the fantasy world Star Wars Land opening a few years later.
Avatar 2 is expected to reach theaters in December 2018, followed by Avatar 3 in December 2020, Avatar 4in December 2022, and Avatar 5 in December 2023.