James Cameron announces four ‘Avatar’ sequels: overkill?

With the success of Star Wars, The Avengers and even the Fast and Furious films, it seems like Hollywood is moving closer and closer to being run by franchises. The latest of these is the extension of James Cameron’s 2009 film Avatar. At CinemaCon in Las Vegas, the director revealed that the film will now have 4 sequels instead of the original 3 he had planned to make.

James made a surprise appearance at CinemaCon in Las Vegas on Thursday and proudly declared, “We have decided to embark on a truly massive cinematic project, making four epic films, each of which stands alone but together forms a complete saga.”

The director announced earlier this year that Avatar 2 would not be released as initially promised for the 2017 Christmas season, which I’m sure was a blow to Walt Disney World, where an Avatar-themed land is being built at the resort’s Animal Kingdom theme park. The first Avatar sequel is now scheduled for Christmas 2018, with the others following around the same time in 2020, 2022, and 2023, respectively.

I have to ask, is anyone (besides Walt Disney World) excited about these sequels? In a piece written in December of 2014, five years after the original came out, Forbes magazine’s Scott Mendelson wrote this, which I feel is still relevant now:

Avatar earned rave reviews, went on to become by far the highest-grossing movie of all time, and won several Oscars. It then almost immediately vanished from the popular zeitgeist, leaving almost no pop culture impact to speak of. It did not inspire a passionate following, or a deluge of multimedia spin-offs that has kept the brand alive over the last five years. Few today will even admit to liking it, and its overall effect on the culture at large is basically non-existent. It came, it crushed all long-term box office records, and it vanished almost without a trace.

[From Forbes]

I thought the original film was visually stunning, but the story did nothing for me. I fact, I couldn’t tell you much about it now. I know James wants to get people to experience his films in the theaters, as opposed to TV, so I’m sure these sequels will be equally as lavish. But, does anyone still care about Pandora? I guess we’ll have to wait until 2018 to find out.

Avatar (2009)

Avatar (2009)

Photo credit: WENN.com, Getty Images

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34 Responses to “James Cameron announces four ‘Avatar’ sequels: overkill?”

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  1. BendyWindy says:

    Yeah. There’s a reason studios rush these series and sequels out in a four year period. Not many people are going to care about Avatar nine years later. Well maybe someone will. I don’t.

    • V4Real says:

      Well Avatar is the only franchise that’s giving Worthington some gigs. 🙂

      Zoe does play some colorful characters doesn’t she? Blue, Green..

      I think they should have stopped at one. Something tells me that trying to squeeze another 4 movies are going to be disastrous. Who do they think are, Marvel?

    • KB says:

      I think he thought the world was going to explode with this news, but the reaction has overwhelmingly been “why?”

    • Chaucer says:

      Pocahontas with blue people does not need a sequel. Especially this long after. It definitely does not need three.

    • Birdy says:

      ditto! didn’t see the first one wont see these either

  2. Poisonous Lookalike says:

    Well, I didn’t see the first one in the theater and couldn’t make it past the first 20 minutes when a friend and I watched it at home, so my response to this news is a big ol’ yawwwwwwwnnnnnnnn.

    • Harryg says:

      That happened to me too! I found it so totally not interesting, it was like watching a video game.

  3. Lilacflowers says:


  4. paolanqar says:

    I was fine with the first one thanks. And now that Sigourney Weaver’s character is dead..what’s the point to even watch it?

    • KB says:

      SPOILER ALERT! I just bought a 3D tv to watch it tonight! Jk

    • Lisa says:

      Yeah but Sigourney is still in the sequels. I liked Avatar. Any movie that gives us big flying dinosaurs attacking super futuristic helicopters is aok in my book.

  5. OSTONE says:

    ZzzzzZzzzz yawn for sure.

  6. JustCrimmles says:

    Does having so many of them make them epic? Is the world out of new stories to tell?

  7. Mia4s says:

    From a box office standpoint I will never bet against James Cameron. Star Wars, Marvel, Batman, F&F; worldwide none of them have come close. His closest competitor is himself, even with inflation Star Wars was $700 million short of the record.

    Creatively? Meh, not excited. I assume there will be new stories (no way they can tie down Saldana for four movies shot continuously, although Worthington isn’t doing much). Will there be humans? Seems like just an animated movie if not.

  8. Maude says:

    There’s a market for more Avatar sequels?

  9. Bridget says:

    You know that sequel no one is asking for? Let’s really go for it and make it THREE sequels. Sounds like a great idea.

    • KB says:

      Lol FOUR of them! And they’re going to be competing with Star Wars in December. I can’t imagine there’s financing for that.

      • Mia4s says:

        Actually if you notice the dates they are specifically not dates with previously announced Star Wars movies. So they’re crazy…but not stupid. 😉

  10. knower says:

    RIP originality (years and years ago…)

  11. pinetree13 says:

    1 sequel would be too many.

    Honestly I was “late” to see this movie as it had been out for a while…we went to see it in Imax since our friends/family raved about seeing it in Imax…

    …has to be one of the most over-hyped movies ever! Great visuals…so what? Lots of movies have great visuals.

    Not to mention as a child of the 80’s all I could think was “THIS IS THE PLOT OF FERNGULLY JUST WITH BLUE PEOPLE!!!!”

    Avatar is a joke! Also they have sex with their hair braids but also ride their horse-monsters with their hair-braids….are they having sex with their horse-monsters? WTF

    • Kilo Tango says:

      Hahahaha PineTree – couldn’t have put it better myself!

    • jj says:

      Horse-monsters!! Oh god I can’t stop laughing!

    • Addison says:

      LOL! Guess I never thought of it that way till today. I don’t think I was paying too much attention. The first movie was not epic. It only made so much money because Cameron buys so many theatres that people have no other options and he keeps the movie in for like a year.

  12. Danielle says:

    It was a pretty movie with a paper thin plot. I cannot even imagine FOUR sequals. Maybe Cameron found a good script writer?

  13. Skins says:

    I know I saw it, but I can’t for the life of me remember one thing about it

  14. Jennifer says:

    I work at Animal Kingdom park…in fact I’m sitting here typing this while looking out the window from my break room at a partially finished Pandora ( which I have to admit looks fantastic ) and I feel nothing. No one here feels anything, no one cares AT ALL! You can’t even find anyone who says they like Avatar. Oh well

  15. Cynthia says:

    I cannot believe with all the talent out there, Hollywood keeps rehashing same old story lines

  16. Amanda G says:

    Honestly, I probably won’t even see the sequel, much less 4 more. The first one’s graphics were mesmerizing to watch, but the story was nothing new. It’s a one-and-done kind of movie.

  17. Jess says:

    I love this point – I never saw Avatar in the first place (zero interest and I’m a sci fi geek) but it is fascinating how little long term impact this movie had.

  18. Ruyana says:

    I wish he’d hurry up! I saw the first Avatar seven years ago, loved it, went repeatedly. I’m afraid he’s going to wait until I’m too damn old to go.