The enormous blue cat eco-aliens are coming back: Avatar: The Way of Water will “easily” cross the break-even mark at the box office, according to James Cameron, and he will develop additional sequels to his fantasy smash.
The filmmaker appeared on this week’s Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace? edition of HBO Max. and said that his mega-budget sequel had surpassed $1.5 billion at the global box office (surpassing Top Gun: Maverick to become the highest-grossing film released in 2022).
“It appears that with the momentum that the picture has now, it will easily pass our break even in the next few days, so it appears that I can’t get out of this, I’m going to have to make these additional sequels,” Cameron stated (with presumably some feigned reluctance, given his obvious dedication and enthusiasm for his franchise).
“I know what I’m going to do for the next six to seven years. The idea is that we’ll be OK. I’m sure we’ll be talking shortly with the top executives at Disney about the game plan for Avatar 3, which is already in the can – we’ve already recorded and photographed the entire film, so we’re in extended post-production to do all the CG magic.
Then Avatars 4 and 5 are written. We even have some 4 in the works. At this point, we’ve launched a franchise. We’ve started a tale that will now span numerous films.”
James Cameron previously made waves by allegedly estimating that The Way of Water would need to gross at least $2 billion in order to break even and justify a sequel.
“To clarify, I never gave it a number,” Cameron explained. “I stated it would have to be among the highest-grossing pictures in history and somebody else applied for that number and it was taken up. The true figure is lower.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, The Way of Water had an estimated production budget of more than $400 million, with a marketing expenditure of at least $600 million.
Cameron indicated the franchise is working its way through the four elements in recent interview with the French daily 20 Minutes, with a new Na’vi tribe based on fire to be introduced in a future film. Also, the new clan would not be as idyllic and virtuous as the previously introduced forest and water-based Na’vi tribes.
“The ‘Ash People’ will symbolize the flames,” Cameron explained. “I want to present the Na’vi from another aspect since, thus far, I have only shown their good sides. There are both unpleasant human examples and positive Na’vi ones in the early films.
We’ll do the reverse in Avatar 3. We will also explore other planets while continuing the main protagonists’ narrative. I believe the final sections will be the greatest. The others were a prelude, a method to set the table before the dinner.”
The filmmaker and Wallace also addressed Titanic as a metaphor for social apathy to global warming.
“The captain perished with a pocket full of radiotelegraph warnings about ice ahead,” Cameron added.
“We live in the 90 seconds between seeing the iceberg and not being able to turn.”
Avatar 3 is set to be released on December 20, 2024 (assuming no delays).
Mitzi Francis is a content editor at The Landscape Insight. With a background in journalism and a passion for storytelling, Mitzi brings a unique perspective to his role at the publication. He is committed to delivering high-quality, informative content to his readers.