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James Cameron feared that 13 years after the original, ‘Avatar 2’ wouldn’t be relevant — until the trailer arrived

“Avatar: The Way of Water” follows the path of James Cameron.

The writer/director revealed that despite the 13-year gap between his first Avatar film in 2009 and its sequel The Way of Water, which hit theaters December 16, he never thought to make a follow-up film to Avatar within two years.

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“I think I could have done a sequel two years later that was bomb because people weren’t involved with the characters or the direction of the movie,” Cameron told the New York Times. “My personal experience is this: I did a sequel called ‘Aliens’ seven years after the first film. It was very well received. I made a sequel called Terminator 2, seven years after the first film. It grossed an order of magnitude more than the first film.”

But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Avatar: The Way of Water has been pushed back to a 2022 release date, almost twice as long as seven years after the first film for a typical Cameron sequel.

“I was a little concerned that in our fast-paced modern world I was stretching too far with ‘Avatar 2’ coming out 12 years later,” Cameron said. “Until we released the teaser trailer and got 148 million views within 24 hours. There’s the seldom seen but fundamentally amazed thing, like, ‘Wow, we haven’t seen that for a long time, but I remember how cool it was back then.’ Does that play in our favor? I do not know. I guess we’ll find out.”

The first film will hit theaters again on September 23 to build anticipation for the sequel. The first “Avatar” film made history, grossed $2 billion and is now being released with a 4K high dynamic range restoration.

The Way of Water tells the story of the Sully family – Jake (Sam Worthington), Neytiri (Zoe Saldana) and their children – as their country is torn apart. According to an official synopsis, the Sully family endures danger, fights to the death and tragedy throughout the film. Forced from their homes, the couple flee to the water world of the Metkayina, disrupting tribal politics. Cameron is directing the feature film and producing with Jon Landau.

Original stars Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana reprise their respective roles as Jake and Neytiri, and Sigourney Weaver also returns. Franchise newcomers Kate Winslet and Michelle Yeoh also enter the mysterious world of Pandora in previously unseen roles. Stephen Lang, Cliff Curtis, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco and Jemaine Clement also star in the cast’s film.

For full details on Avatar: The Way of Water, click here.

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