20th Century Fox and writer-director James Cameron have confirmed that star Sigourney Weaver will return for the three planned Avatar sequels. In the original 2009 blockbuster, Weaver played scientist Grace Augustine, who spent much of her screen time in the guise of her Na’vi body before undergoing a one-way physical transformation at the movie’s end. Cameron confirms that Weaver will rejoin returning cast members Sam Worthington, Zoë Saldana and Stephen Lang in the sequels, the first of which plans to start production later this year, but kept the details of her new character close to the vest. Hit the jump for more.
As THR reports, Weaver will indeed return for Cameron’s Avatar sequels, but her role is still a bit mysterious at the moment. Here’s how Cameron broke the news (with spoilers if you haven’t seen the first film):
“Sigourney and I have a long creative history, dating back to 1985 when we made Aliens. We’re good friends who’ve always worked well together, so it just feels right that she’s coming back for the Avatar sequels. Her character of Grace Augustine, as fans know, died in the first movie, so she’s playing a different and in many ways more challenging character in the upcoming films. We’re both looking forward to this new creative challenge, the latest chapter in our long and continuing collaboration.”
Fans have speculated that Grace’s “death” was actually more of a metaphysical transition into the connected world of the Na’vi’s environment. We’ll have to wait until December 2016 to see what Weaver’s new role is. The plan is to have the three sequels film back to back starting later this year, with each of them opening in December of 2016, 2017, and 2018. They are currently all untitled, but we expect that to change perhaps as early as the end of this year.