Having resumed production in New Zealand back in June following the global production shutdown, director James Cameron has offered an update on the status of his Avatar sequels, with the filmmaker revealing that shooting on the first two follow-ups is now in its closing stages.
“Covid hit us like it hit everybody… We lost about four and a half months of production,” Cameron told his Terminator star Arnold Schwarzenegger during an interview for the 2020 Austrian World Summit. ” As a result of that, we’ve rolled around one more full year for a release in December of 2022. That’s been announced already. Now that doesn’t mean I have an extra year to finish the film, because the day we deliver Avatar 2 we’ll just start working on finishing Avatar 3.”
“So where we are right now, I’m down in New Zealand shooting,” he continued. “We’re shooting the remainder of the live action. We’ve got about ten percent left to go. We’re a hundred percent complete on Avatar 2 and we’re sort of 95 percent complete on Avatar 3. We made the first film here in New Zealand, and it’s ranked either first or second best country in the world for its Covid response – sometimes Germany’s in the number one spot, sometimes New Zealand’s in the number one spot. But we’re actually able to operate. We’re at level two here right now, but we’re able to operate, we’re able to shoot, and we’re able to have a more or less normal life here. We’re very fortunate, so I don’t see any road blocks to us getting the picture finished.”
Avatar 2 sees Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Matt Gerald, Dileep Rao, Stephen Lang, Giovanni Ribisi and Sigourney Weaver all reprising their roles from the 2009 blockbuster, while new additions to the cast include Kate Winslet, Oona Chaplin, Cliff Curtis, Britain Dalton, Filip Geljo, Jamie Flatters, Bailey Bass, Trinity Bliss, Jack Champion, Duane Evans Jr., Edie Falco, Brendan Cowell, Michelle Yeoh, Jemaine Clement, Keston John and CJ Jones.
Avatar 2 is set for release in December 2022, followed by Avatar 3 in 2024, Avatar 4 in 2026 and Avatar 5 in 2028.