Avatar: The Way of Water, Avatar 3, one movie

Avatar: The Way of Water may be over three hours long, but it certainly doesn’t answer every question it raises. While we know that there are several more Avatar sequels on the way, there may be a reason why the first sequel felt like half a story. Avatar: The Way of Water screenwriters Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver told Variety that the sequel was supposed to be one movie with Avatar 3.

When Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver were tasked with writing the script for Avatar: The Way of Water, they wound up with far too much story. “From the beginning, one of the challenges — I’ll say it was a delicious challenge — is that there was too much material,” Silver said. At first they considered cutting down the script, but James Cameron didn’t think that was a good idea. “Carrying this burden was always an issue in terms of getting the first act of that first movie moving, and there was just an enormous amount of material in there,” Silver said. “So somewhere after we had started writing, [Cameron] called us up and he said, ‘Look, we’ve got too much material. We’re going to split it into two movies.’” Jaffa added that splitting the script into two movies “has worked out great for us.

It remains to be seen what the future of the franchise will be, but it seems that the sequels have some big surprises in store. Jack Champion, who plays Jake’s adopted son Spider, said that he was shocked by Avatar 3. “It just takes a hard left turn, and that’s not a bad thing,” Champion said. “You think you know where it’s going, but then a wrecking ball comes. So you’re completely like, ‘Oh wow, I never thought that would’ve happened.’ You also see more regions of Pandora, and you get introduced to more cultures. So I think it’s even better than Avatar: The Way of Water. Collectively, they’ll each get better.” James Cameron has even said that Avatar 4 will “go nuts in a good way,” with a studio executive merely saying “holy f**k” when sent the script.

Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, Avatar: The Way of Water tells the story of the Sully family (Jake, Neytiri, and their kids), the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive,  and the tragedies they endure. The film stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldaña, Stephen Lang, Kate Winslet, Cliff Curtis, CCH Pounder, Giovanni Ribisi, Edie Falco, and more. James Cameron directed and co-wrote the script alongside Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver. You can check out a review of Avatar: The Way of Water from our own Eric Walkuski right here, and let us know what you thought of the film as well.


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