After a movie almost pays $3 billion at the worldwide box officeshould you imagine the studio behind it would like collect immediately. Get a sequel in cinema as soon as possible. Strike the iron while it is hot. Avatar director James Cameron however, is not such a person. He doesn’t rush. And yet even he admits that the 13 years in between have lasted The mega hit of 2009 and the continuation of December Avatar: The way of the water made him a little worried.
“I was a little concerned that I had stretched the chain too far, in our fast-paced, modern world, with Avatar 2 coming in 12 years later,” Cameron told the New York Times. “Just until we dropped the teaser trailer, and we got 148 million views in 24 hours. There’s that scarcely seen but amazing principle, which is, ‘Wow, we haven’t seen that in a long time, but I remember how cool it was back then,’ continued Cameron. ‘Is that to our advantage? I don’t know. I think we’re going to find out.”
Cameron is no stranger to sequels with long waits in between. In the same interview, he points out that he Aliens seven years after the first film, and it’s considered one of the best sequels ever. He also made Terminator 2: Judgment Day seven years after the original and not only is it considered one of the greatest sequels ever, it surpassed the original exponentially. So even if he was worried about Avatar 2 for a while he did have some evidence that waiting and doing it right might work. “I think I could have made one [Avatar] follow up two years later and let it be a bomb because people had no relationship with the characters or the direction of the movie,” he said.
But Cameron hasn’t made a real “bomb” in 40 years. His track record is basically unparalleled. So we have to imagine that while he’s been working on this film for over ten years, his concern and confidence is through the roof. However, one thing he couldn’t work on at the time is: Avatars cultural impact, which doesn’t come close to the other mega blockbusters of its time. Raised nearly $3 billion and yet, very few toys on the shelves, quotes in the lexicon and only a few extremely brave cosplayers. It will be more than interesting to see not only if the movie is a hit, but also how big the hit is…aand whether the wait will bring in a new generation of fans. Then there’s the follow up, though the is waiting for all the next ones Avatar sequels will be minuscule compared to this one. Avatar 3 scheduled for release in December 2024, with parts 4 and 5 come two years after the previous one. Could that be possible? waiting too short? Who knows? Well, maybe James Cameron.
For a Avatar refresher, the original movie returns to theaters this weekend. Avatar: The way of the water opens Dec 16.
Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest miracle and Star Wars releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on Film and TVand everything you need to know about House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.