The Ninjabot

AVATAR Sequels Delayed a Year to Work on the Scripts

Posted on January 14, 2015 at 11:58 am by David "Snackbar" Edmundson


Even though Avatar seems to lack an active fanbase (when compared to other blockbusters), we will be getting three sequels to James Cameron‘s technologically revolutionary, 2009 film.  The first of these sequels was set to be released in 2016 with a new sequel following in 2017 and then 2018.  I’ll give Cameron this: he’s always ambitious, and since he’s clearly enamored with the world of Pandora, I assume there are plenty of places he wants to go, so one film wouldn’t be enough to accommodate his vision. But that vision still needs some work according to the director, who says that the Avatar sequels will be pushed back a year.

Speaking in New Zealand—where he shot the original and will shoot the sequels—Cameron said [via Yahoo!], “There’s a layer of complexity in getting the story to work as a saga across three films that you don’t get when you’re making a stand-alone film,” and that his plan to get the first of the sequels out by December 2016 was “probably too ambitious.”

Although Cameron says that his team of screenwriters (who are writing the sequels simultaneously) should have completed scripts james-cameron-avatarby the end of the month, the director’s prudence makes sense.  The new Avatar trilogy will be a monumental task since he’s planning to shoot all three at once and push the bounds of filmmaking technology  yet again.  Even if he spent all of 2015 shooting the film, the amount of visual effects required would put the director in an unnecessary time crunch, especially since no one is clamoring for more Avatar films.  This isn’t Star Wars where a studio needs the movie ASAP to appease shareholders, and Cameron has the clout to make films on his own schedule.

Cameron also explained why the pre-production process on the new Avatar movies is so intensive:

“We’re writing three simultaneously. And we’ve done that so that everything tracks throughout the three films. We’re not just going to do one and then make up another one and another one after that,” he said. “And parallel with that, we’re doing all the design. So we’ve designed all the creatures and the environments.”

He added that while it was important for the movies to be linked, he also wanted each one to have a satisfying conclusion rather than provide two cliffhangers.  I assume that could be in the vein of the first film where Jake Sully wakes up fully tied to his Navi body, and that opens the door for new adventures, but it’s also a resolution the audience can accept.

But will the audience accept more Avatar?  Cameron clearly knows what he’s doing, and one would be foolish to not believe in him at this point, but in the 5 years since Avatar’s release I don’t think anyone has heard people wondering “when can I get more Avatar?”

Follow Snackbar on Twitter @snackie_cakes for all your Geek News

    • GeekFurious

      I love articles where the writer speaks for the audience… it doesn’t make the writer sound like a high school “journalist” at all.

      • Snackbar

        I was simply making an observation as someone who keeps his ear to the ground. Avatar is the highest grossing film of all time and was a technological wonder, but it seems that most people think it is a forgettable film. It could be backlash of a popular film, but unlike other blockbuster franchises (Star Wars, Marvel, DC, YA adaptation of the month, etc.) there does’t appear to be a groundswell of people foaming at the mouth for new adventures on Pandora.

        Editor – Geek Legacy High School Torch

    • Guest

      I love when people leave snarky comments on the internet… doesn’t make the commenter sound like a high school “cool kid” at all.


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