Avatar, the James Cameron hit film, released the second film in the franchise in December 2022 called The Way of Water. Fans have been singing praises for the second movie, which makes us look forward to more Avatar movies coming in the future!
Here is everything we know about the upcoming Avatar movies.
The First Two Movies
The first set of Avatar movies established the franchise, earning loyal fans who were excited to learn more about Na’vi, Pandora, and how human beings managed to cohabitate with them through Avatars
The first Avatar movie was released on December 18, 2009, and it starred Sam Worthington as Jake Sully, a paraplegic ex-marine who joined the mission to travel to the distant planet of Pandora after his brother was killed in a robbery.
When Jake arrives at Pandora, he learns about the plans of a greedy corporation to drive out the natives of the planet, the Na’vi, to mine their land and exploit the natural resources of the planet. Jake agrees to join the Na’vi using advanced technology that allows him to live like one of them through an Avatar, infiltrating the tribe to gather intelligence and study the culture of the Na’vi. He cooperates with the military unit on the mission led by Colonel Quaritch.
Jake finds himself bonding with the tribe, experiencing acceptance and a sense of belonging with the indigenous inhabitants of Pandora. He even finds love after falling for the beautiful Neytiri (played by Zoe Saldana). When the Colonel pushes to destroy the planet and completely drive the Na’vi from their home, Jake is forced to stand as an Avatar with the Na’vi to protect them and their land.
You can watch the trailer for the film here:
Avatar: The Way of Water
Avatar: The Way of Water premiered in theaters on December 16, 2022.
In this sequel, we return to Pandora with the Na’vi many years later, we see Jake and Neytiri have already built a family. LIfe as they know it is turned upside down when a threat to their home forces them to evacuate to Metkayina’s waterworld, with conflict rising between the two tribes.
Here is the trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water
The Way of Water runs for three hours and 10 minutes, almost 30 minutes longer than the first movie. The film also has a lot of underwater scenes, and director James Cameron wanted to be authentic, opting to build a studio with a pool. The main cast members even took professional scuba diving lessons to ensure that they were safe and comfortable acting while holding their breath underwater.
The Way of Water cast members Sigourney Weaver and Kate Winslet, who happen to be two of the most beloved actresses in Hollywood today, managed to hold their breaths for more than five minutes underwater. Winslet even reached seven minutes of staying underwater.
In an Indiewire feature produced, Jon Landau spoke about one of his favorite scenes in the film:
One of my favorite memories was we had this circular tank, maybe 40 feet wide, with a big glass portal in it. I walked by one day and I see Kate Winslet walking on the bottom of the tank. She’s walking towards me and sees me in the window, and she just waves, gets to the end of the wall, turns around, and walks all the way back.
Back in 2021, Cameron expressed his hopes for cinemas to be revived.
Everybody makes a big deal out of [the box office battle], but the truth is what we really need to focus on is getting back to theaters. Hopefully, we can still have movies like that, ‘Endgame’ and ‘Avatar’ and the big Marvel movies and all that, movies that are able to make $1 billion or $2 billion.
Let’s pray that movie theaters are still there after this pandemic and after this shift towards streaming, not that I have anything against streaming. There’s great writing and great shows in [streaming], but let’s remember that movie theaters are a sacred experience for all of us. Let’s get back out there when it’s safe to do so.
When The Way of Water was featured in the 2022 CinemaCon, Cameron promised that the film would be an unforgettable cinematic experience.
I know it’s been rough on the exhibition community these last two years. I just want you to hear it from me that [producer Jon Landau] and I are here to work with you, you’re our partners, and the best way we can do that is by delivering content that is a must-see experience at the cinema.
The Upcoming Avatar Movies
It’s rumored that there will be three more movies coming out that are part of the franchise, though these are still not confirmed. Most of the original cast members are expected to return, led by Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, and Stephen Lang.
The following details are still tentative, but here is everything we know about the upcoming Avatar films.
Avatar: The Seed Bearer
Avatar: The Seed Bearer was originally expected to premiere on December 2023, but since the second movie was delayed and premiered in 2022, The Seed Bearer may premiere in 2024 instead.
The third movie may be about the Tree of Souls in Pandora and the Na’v’i’s attempt to revive the tree with the help of Jake, Neytiri, and his family. The Na’vi revere the Tree of Souls as a religious figure, believing that the dandelion-like wood sprite seeds that come from the tree bring good luck to whoever they land on.
There may be one specific bearer, as implied by the title, who can hold the seeds and help it grow.
Avatar: The Tulkun Rider
The fourth movie is Avatar: The Tulkun Rider, which is set to premiere sometime in December 2025 and is reportedly shooting back to back with the fifth movie.
We don’t have clues about what a Tulkun is since there have been no mentions of it in any previous Na’vi lore. The closes guess we have that is another creature that Jake bonds with and learns to ride, ergo the Tulkun Rider.
Avatar: The Quest for Eywa
The fifth and last movie in the Avatar franchise will be called Avatar: The Quest for Eywa, and we know very little about the details of the film. The film is currently scheduled to premiere in late 2027.
Eywa is the goddess deity the Na’vi worship, the divine being that is the life force powering everything in Pandora, connecting all the inhabitants in the world. The title implies that Jake and his family, maybe even the entire tribe of the Na’vi, will be forced to go on a quest to search for Eywa to defeat another adversary.
Avatar and Its Message to Protect the Environment
The first Avatar movie focused on teaching its viewers about the evils of exploiting natural resources, specifically deforestation, at the expense of others and the future generations. The Way of Water carries on with the message of protecting the environment, this time exploring the importance of ocean conservation.
The next Avatar movie will most likely be teaching its viewers more about protecting and conserving other aspects of nature and the environment, like preserving endangered animals and plant species.
You can watch the available Avatar films on Disney+.