James Cameron Talks Pressure of ‘Avatar’ Sequels

By December 12, 2015

When you’re making a sequel to a successful film, there’s always a fair amount of pressure. When it’s the sequel to the highest grossing film of all time and your name is James Cameron, “pressure” doesn’t even begin to cover it. It seems preposterous to suggest that anything could top the $2.7 billion grossing Avatar, which came out in 2009, but Cameron’s determined to deliver a quality follow-up. Three of them, actually.

Entertainment Weekly recently spoke with the director, who is currently working on the scripts for all three sequels:

“I’m in the process of doing another pass through all three scripts right now…Just refining. That’s in parallel with the design process. The design process is very mature at this point. We’ve been designing for about a year and a half. All the characters, settings and creatures are all pretty much [set].”

Given the grand scale of Avatar and the obvious goal of expanding the universe created in that film, one can see how it’s taken over 6 years to get things (almost) squared away. We’re 2 years away from the release of Avatar 2, and expectations will be fairly astronomical for it to be another colossal success. Maybe not another $2.7 billion success, but it will certainly need to be a serious blockbuster. So yeah, there’s a little bit of pressure. Fortunately, Cameron is very aware of that and seems ready to take it all on:

“…you have to challenge yourself. Obviously, expectations are going to be very high on these films, especially on Avatar 2, to make sure it wasn’t just some big fluke the first time. So we’ve got to deliver. I’ve created a nice rod for my own back, so they say.”

9 years will have passed by the time the sequel to Avatar is released. One of the biggest questions surrounding the continuation of the franchise is whether or not audiences will still care about Pandora and its giant, blue inhabitants. Sure, the film made a ton of money, but it wasn’t a sweeping critical success. Part of the allure of the film was seeing technology we hadn’t seen before. Now that technology has become commonplace, so Avatar 2 – 4 will need to really deliver a compelling story on top of mind-blowing effects in order to capture the imagination of audiences everywhere. We’ll just have to wait and see if the King of the World can somehow deliver satisfying sequels to the biggest movie of all time. Good luck with that.

Avatar 2 is set to be released on December 25, 2018.

Make sure to keep checking back for updates – right here on GeekNation.

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Joe Ruggirello
Joe is a writer, retired comedian, and giant nerd. He's particularly fond of comic books, pro wrestling, and Godzilla. Oh, and that Star Wars thing. You can yell at him on Twitter @JoeRu23.