With a further $23.8 million domestically and $50.8 million overseas on Tuesday, James Cameron’s “Avatar: The Way of Water” has crossed the $1 billion global box office mark in just two weeks.
It is only the sixth film to achieve that milestone in its first two weeks of release and the first to do so since “Spider-Man: No Way Home” was released a year ago. The worldwide total so far of $1.029 billion is let by the domestic tally of $317.1 million and China with $108 million.
With the sequel costing at least $350-400 million to produce before marketing, Cameron has indicated the film needs to hit around $2 billion to be considered a success.
The news comes as more details about the film’s production have emerged. Screenwriters Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver spoke with Variety about the writing process on the films which involved them and fellow screenwriters Josh Friedman and Shane Salerno.
Over the span of six months, everything was mapped out, which led to the three sequels becoming four. All four started mapping out characters, members of the family, and story arcs across a “room full of whiteboards”. Cameron made a point of not telling who would write each movie.
Once all the concepts and beats of the story were laid out, the writers were then assigned their films – Jaffa and Silver got the second and third, Friedman got the fourth and Salerno the fifth. Should Cameron get to make and release them all, we’ll learn all about what was on those whiteboards by the year 2028 when the fifth film opens.
“Avatar: The Way of Water” is playing in theaters now.