If it seems like there hasn’t been much news about James Cameron’s three planned sequels to the 2009 blockbuster Avatar, it’s because there’s not much news to tell. Although the first sequel had been slated for a December 2016 release, the director has revealed that it will now likely come out in late 2017.
“There’s a layer of complexity in getting the story to work as a saga across three films that you don’t get when you’re making a stand-alone film,” Cameron told The Associated Press (via ABC News). “We’re writing three simultaneously. And we’ve done that so that everything tracks throughout the three films. We’re not just going to do one and then make up another one and another one after that. Parallel with that, we’re doing all the design. So we’ve designed all the creatures and the environments.”
Because all three Avatar sequels will be filmed at the same time, it became apparent and necessary that the production would be delayed another year. The first sequel will now likely come out in two to three years, with the second sequel following a year later. If it all stays on track, the saga would wrap up in 2019. Cameron also added that the screenplays for all three films should be completed this month.
The director hasn’t offered many clues about what direction he plans to take with the sequels other than revealing that the film’s primary cast – Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana and Sigourney Weaver – have all signed on to return for the remainder of the quadrilogy. Cameron has previously promised one thing about the films: “They’re gonna be bitchin’. You will shit yourself with your mouth wide open.”