James Cameron gives update on Avatar sequels’ production process
Following the production wrap for Avatar 2, director James Cameron has shared a new update about the long production process of the upcoming Avatar sequels. Speaking with Variety, Cameron revealed that despite previous pushbacks on the release dates, everything is now on track with the sequels’ overall production and they’re confident that Avatar 2 will be ready for its December 2021 theatrical release.
“From 2013 until now we’ve mostly designed the whole world across four new movies,” Cameron said. “We’ve written, finished scripts for all four of those films. We’ve cast them, and we’ve [performance] captured movie 2, movie 3, and the first part of movie 4. We’re mostly done with the live action. I’ve got a couple months in New Zealand in spring, so we’re kind of on track with what we set out to do.”
He further explained the intricate process of creating the sequels. “People don’t really understand the scope and complexity of the process. It’s like making two and a half big animated films. A typical big animated film takes about four years, so, if you do the math on that, we’re kind of right on schedule for December 2021.”
The cast of the Avatar franchise includes Kate Winslet, Edie Falco, Michelle Yeoh, Vin Diesel, Jemaine Clement, and Oona Chaplin alongside a slate of young actors. Returning cast members include Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Joel David Moore, Dileep Rao, Stephen Lang, Matt Gerald and Sigourney Weaver.
Cameron recently explained that Stephen Lang’s Colonel Miles Quaritch is coming back for all four sequels and will be the main villain throughout the story. Filming officially started on Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 on September 25, 2017.
After some shuffling of the schedule, Avatar 2 has been pushed back a full year from December 18, 2020, to December 17, 2021. Avatar 3 has been pushed back two years December 17, 2021 to December 22, 2023. Avatar 4 will open two years after that on December 19, 2025 (originally December 20, 2024) and Avatar 5 will drop on December 17, 2027 (originally December 19, 2025). Although Avatar 4 and Avatar 5 will only be released with director James Cameron’s caveat that Avatar 2 and 3 are successful at the box office.