In a move many saw coming, filmmaker James Cameron has confirmed that the previously announced late 2018 release date for the first of his “Avatar” sequels will not be met.
Speaking with The Star about his plans for the long in development four sequels, he confirms the first one won’t be released in 2018 as had been suggested:
“Well, 2018 is not happening. We haven’t announced a firm release date. What people have to understand is that this is a cadence of releases. So we’re not making Avatar 2. We’re making Avatar 2, 3, 4 and 5. It’s an epic undertaking. It’s not unlike building the Three Gorges dam.
(Laughs) So I know where I’m going to be for the next eight years of my life. It’s not an unreasonable time frame if you think about it. It took us four-and-a-half years to make one movie and now we’re making four. We’re full tilt boogie right now.
This is my day job and pretty soon we’ll be 24-7. We’re pretty well designed on all our creatures and sets. It’s pretty exciting stuff. I wish I could share with the world. But we have to preserve a certain amount of showmanship and we’re going to draw that curtain when the time is right.”
20th Century Fox previously announced a December 2018 release date for the first sequel with the rest to arrive December 2020, December 2022, and December 2023. Whether this current delay will impact the others is unclear t this point.
Cameron also revealed that the upcoming “Pandora – The World of Avatar” attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom takes place in the canon of the films, but years after all of the sequels:
“So it’s Avatar the first movie, then there are the four sequels that we’re working on now and then a whole generation after that, when all the conflict, all the struggle and all the warfare between the Na’vi and the humans is over; and the Na’vi have welcomed us to Pandora to help us understand nature and ourselves better.”
Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang and Sigourney Weaver will shoot their scenes for the films later this year. Cameron and Jon Landau will produce from a script by Cameron, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, Josh Friedman, and Shane Salerno.