Today, the official Avatar Twitter released four new pieces of concept art for James Cameron‘s long awaited sequel, Avatar 2 (that’s probably not the official title). Details on the plot remain scarce beyond the story involving the kids of Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), but Cameron has been hard at work on the film for a long time now trying to push the visual effects while remaining true to his vision of 3D filmmaking even though Hollywood has largely abandoned 3D.
These pieces of concept art don’t really tell us anything new about the story, but they do tell us that the sequel will take us to new places in Pandora, which is to be expected. Sequels typically go bigger and take viewers to new settings, and Cameron is very proud of the entirely new planet he created (when I went to review the original Avatar back in 2009, every critic was handed a book detailing the flora and fauna of Pandora).
The question I continue to come back to (and really the only question that matters until we get something more tangible on the plot) is whether audiences are eager to return to the world of Avatar. I know it’s unwise to bet against Cameron after he won big with both Titanic and Avatar, but I don’t buy the argument that Avatar is somehow more precious because it hasn’t been continued on with books and TV shows and other franchise tie-ins that we expect for major blockbuster sagas. While I’m sure it’s convenient that the movie is just the movie, I don’t know if Avatar is the same kind of enduring pop culture myth. The original Avatar was huge, but with the sequel coming 12 years later, I’m not sure there’s the urgency to return to Pandora.
Check out the concept art below. Avatar 2 opens December 17, 2021 and also stars Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, Giovanni Ribisi, Kate Winslet, Michelle Yeoh, Jemaine Clement, Vin Diesel, Cliff Curtis, David Thewlis, and Edie Falco.