In the ensuing years since the release of Avatar—the highest grossing film of all time—we’ve been privy to plenty of “updates” on the status of the sequels from folks tied to the production, and director James Cameron has now offered up yet another. As Fox has now finally set December 2016, 2017, and 2018 release dates for the three upcoming Avatar sequels, this update comes backed by the fact that the films are really, truly, actually coming, and Cameron seems to be in a solid place with regards to planning. The filmmaker says they’re developing the software while he works on the scripts and designs all the new creatures and environments, and he added that he hasn’t decided whether he will shoot all or just some of the film in High Frame Rate like Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy. Hit the jump to read on.
Though there wasn’t really any concern about them not coming back, Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana have now officially solidified their deals to star in all three of the upcoming Avatar sequels. Heat Vision confirms that Worthington and Saldana will be reprising their roles as Jake Sully and Neytiri, and while plot details for this trio of films are under wraps, the report notes that Sully and Neytiri will have children. The first actor to sign on for all three films was Stephen Lang, and the announcement of his casting took away any stakes we had with regards to his character surviving or dying in the next two movies.
Director James Cameron is co-writing Avatar 2, 3, and 4 with Josh Friedman, Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver, and Shane Salerno, respectively. We know that filming will take place entirely in New Zealand, and Cameron plans on shooting all three pics at once when production gets underway later this year. Avatar 2 is finally slated for release December 2016, with the other two films following in December 2017 and 2018.
Last night, we reported that James Cameron would shoot all three Avatar sequels over the course of nine months in New Zealand. Today, he’s provided some new information about the plot for the upcoming trilogy. Story details have been scarce, especially since the sequels were expanded to three movies as opposed to just two. When it was just Avatar 2 and Avatar 3, the sequels were reportedly about wrapping up the relationship between Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (Zoe Saldana). While that may still be part of the plan even with another film in the mix, Cameron has revealed some lofty aspirations for how he plans to explore Pandora and expand Jake’s story.
Hit the jump for more. Filming is expected to begin in October 2014. The Avatar sequels will come out at the pace of one film every December starting in December 2016.
New Zealand’s small army of proficient film crews have been working on The Hobbit, and now it appears they’ll have another mammoth trilogy to tackle. James Cameron has issued a statement that he plans to shoot Avatar 2, Avatar 3, and Avatar 4 in New Zealand. According to The Wrap, the three sequels will be shot at the same time, and “perhaps over a period of about nine months.” Obviously, this is great news for the small country as Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce said in a statement, “The Avatar sequels will provide hundreds of jobs and thousands of hours of work directly in the screen sector as well as jobs right across the economy.”
Of course, this works to 20th Century Fox and Lightstorm Entertainment’s benefit as well. The Wrap reports, “New Zealand’s government has agreed to a 25 percent financial rebate, up from the current 15 percent,” and Cameron expects the budget on all three sequels to come in beneath $1 billion, which is surprising when you consider that the first film was reported to have cost $500 million. Avatar 2 is set for December 2016 followed by Avatar 3 in December 2017 and then Avatar 4 in December 2018.
Stephen Lang‘s performance as Colonel Quaritch was one of the best things about Avatar. Of course, like most villains in standard adventure movies, he met his demise in a grandiose fashion. In this case, it was taking three huge arrows to the chest after losing a mech battle to Jake Sully (Sam Worthington). But for director James Cameron, such a brutal death shouldn’t mean the end of the delightful character.
Hit the jump for more. Avatar 2 will begin filming this October for December 2016 (set your calendars now!) with two more sequels to follow.
Director James Cameron has been promising follow-ups to his 2009 film Avatar since shortly after the first pic entered theaters and started breaking box office records. In true Cameron fashion, the filmmaker has taken his time in crafting the sequels. We finally got a (hopefully) firm timetable earlier this year, when 20th Century Fox announced that the Avatar trilogy had been expanded to three sequels, with Avatar 2 opening in theaters December 2016. Now Sam Worthington has provided yet another update on when filming might begin, offering a few other details in the process. Hit the jump for more.
Yesterday we got a bit of an update on the long-promised sequels to writer/director James Cameron’s 2009 film Avatar, but it turns out there’s much more to the story. Cameron has been working on two follow-up films to the sci-fi pic over the last four years, with an eye towards filming both Avatar 2 and 3 at the same time and then releasing the sequels a year apart. While last we heard Cameron was holed up in New Zealand finalizing the scripts for the sequels, news broke yesterday that Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles creator Josh Friedman had been enlisted to pitch in on the screenplay for Avatar 2. It just so happens that this was only one third of the story, as Fox announced today that Cameron has actually enlisted the help of four screenwriters to collaborate with him on the screenplays for not only Avatar 2 and 3, but also Avatar 4, with the first sequel poised to hit theaters (finally) in December 2016. Hit the jump for much more.
In the spirit of TIFF 2012 winding down this weekend, I’m interested in hearing what some of our readers most anticipated pics coming out of the festival are. For me, I was already psyched for films such as Looper, Cloud Atlas, and The Master, but early buzz has also peaked my interest in The Place Beyond the Pines, End of Watch, Spring Breakers, Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp, Dredd 3D, and At Any Price among others. What about you? Where there films that showed up on your radar while following the festival? What about a film you were looking forward to that you were disappointed didn’t fare quite as well as you had hoped (for me, this was Passion)? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check out this week’s fifth spot for a link that can help you get caught up on all of our TIFF 2012 coverage.
In addition to that fifth spot, also on the docket for this week’s Top 5 is a slew of video interviews for Paul W. S. Anderson‘s Resident Evil: Retribution, the first full trailer for Steven Spielberg‘s Lincoln, James Cameron talking the future of Avatar and what his take on Jurassic Park would have been like, and Steve’s video interviews with some of the major names behind Finding Nemo 3D. Brief recaps and links to each lie after the jump.
Jon Landau, a longtime collaborator with James Cameron, recently spoke about the progress of Avatar 2 and Avatar 3, but now we have an idea of what the fourth film will be. From Cameron himself comes word that Avatar 4 will likely be a prequel that explores the colonization process of Pandora before the events of Avatar. While the creative team is still working on the scripts for the two sequels, Cameron admits he has not yet put pen to paper for the prequel, but seems to have the kernel of an idea in mind. Hit the jump to hear what he had to say.
Though 20th Century Fox ensured that James Cameron’s next film after Avatar would be a sequel to the highest grossing film of all time, the director has been taking his sweet time getting the project going. Cameron’s been busy diving to the ocean’s deepest point and documenting it in the film Deepest Challenge, but it appears he’s finally getting ready to return to Pandora. We previously heard that the director would probably be filming Avatar 2 and 3 at the same time, and latest word from the filmmaker was that he was “in the Avatar business period,” meaning he’s only interested in making Avatar films from here on out. At the same time, Cameron first dropped word about a possible Avatar 4, and now star Sigourney Weaver claims that the director will film all three Avatar sequels at once. Hit the jump for more.
In last week’s opening paragraph I welcomed the summer movie season into the fold by way of The Avengers. Earlier this week it dawned on me that another season is upon us as well. One that is nearly as costly as a summer blockbuster, albeit far less anticipated by yours truly: wedding season. Over the course of the next few months, I’ll attend no fewer than four ceremonies/receptions (not including my own) and, while I’ll be honored to have been invited to share a special moment with friends new and old, I’ll likely fall behind on my summer movie checklist. So, if you start noticing Top 5 opening paragraphs having less to do with film than what type of dessert was served at the reception, you have my most sincere advance apology.
Wedding disclaimers aside, awaiting you on the other side of this week’s Top 5 is James Cameron saying he only wants to make Avatar movies from now on, the first trailer for director Ruben Fleischer‘s Gangster Squad, Prometheus‘ R-rating, Matt’s letter of recommendation for Joss Whedon, and Dark Shadows coverage including interviews with Johnny Depp, Tim Burton, and Seth Grahame-Smith. A brief recap and link to each ensues after the jump.
After the absurd success of Titanic in 1997 and 1998, it took director James Cameron more than a decade to get around to his next feature film, Avatar, which debuted to more absurd success in 2009 and 2010. We must always admire Cameron’s ability to deliver original properties that are both commercial hits and critical favorites. But according to the director, he’s done with the worldbuilding aspect of filmmaking:
“Last year I basically completely disbanded my production company’s development arm. So I’m not interested in developing anything. I’m in the Avatar business. Period. That’s it. I’m making Avatar, Avatar 2, Avatar 3, maybe Avatar 4.”
Hit the jump for Cameron’s full explanation.