The highly anticipated sequel directed by James Cameron has arrived in Italian cinemas. It is set over ten years after the events told in the first film. Let’s go back to Pandora, among the blue people of the Na’vi. We find the family formed by Jake Sully and Neytiri, with their 5 children. From the cast to the plot, from the summary of the first film to the next projects: here is some information and curiosities

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Thirteen years after the first trip to Pandora, we can finally return to the planet. Yesterday, Wednesday 14 December, it was released in Italian cinemas Avatar – The way of water. This is the sequel to the 2009 film Avatars, James Cameron’s colossal which has collected records and awards (it won the Oscars for best photography, best scenography, best special effects). Here are a few things to know about the highly anticipated film (ALL THE NEWS).

What we know about Avatar: The Water Way

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The original title of the film is Avatar: The Way of Water. It lasts 3 hours and 12 minutes. It is distributed in theaters, also in 3D, by The Walt Disney Company Italia. In the United States it will be released on December 16, with projections of a box office of 150 million dollars. It is written by James Cameron, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver. The soundtrack is entrusted to Simon Franglen, who had also worked on the first film: at the time the music was written by James Horner, who died in 2015 in a plane crash. The Weeknd also collaborated on the soundtrack. Filming began in September 2017 in New Zealand, but Cameron has been working on the scripts for years, rehashing or rewriting them.

The plot of the sequel

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Avatar – The way of water is set over ten years after the events told in the first film. Let’s go back to Pandora, among the blue people of the Na’vi. We find the family formed by Jake Sully and Neytiri, with their 5 children: 3 biological and 2 adopted. Between one battle and another, they will all be forced to face a new looming danger and will have to understand how far they are willing to go to protect each other. To fight old enemies – with the return of Miles Quaritch in hybrid Na’vi form and a new platoon of Recoms of the Rda – they will also seek the help of neighboring clans, exploring other regions of Pandora and trying to adapt.

The plot of the first chapter

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Don’t you remember who Jake Sully and Neytiri are? Here is a summary of the plot of the first chapter of Avatars. In 2154 Jake Sully, a former marine confined to a wheelchair after an injury suffered in the war, is called to face a mission on Pandora: he must replace his twin brother, who died suddenly. The purpose of the project, apparently, is to study the habitat and inhabitants of the planet, the Na’vi. These are blue humanoids, about three meters tall, in perfect symbiosis with nature. Sully and other crew members infiltrate the indigenous tribes, looking for information. But since Pandora’s atmosphere is toxic to humans, they use an avatar: a hybrid body made by mixing human and Na’vi DNA. In reality, however, the Rda company does not only want to study the Na’vi, but wants to drive them away from their lands and take possession of the deposits of a precious mineral. During his mission, Sully meets Princess Neytiri, who teaches him the customs and traditions of the place. Love is born between the two, so much so that the former marine decides to abandon humans and side with the Na’vi in ​​defense of Pandora. He initiates the fight with the forces led by Colonel Miles Quaritch. At the end of the battle, Sully chooses to stay on the planet and be forever his avatar.

Director James Cameron

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The director of both films is James Cameron, who was unable to attend the premiere in Los Angeles on December 12 due to Covid. “It’s important for a sequel to honor what audiences loved about the experience the first time around. But you also have to throw him off balance by proposing what he doesn’t expect. And here there are many surprises in the story”, from “family dynamics” to new protagonists, the Canadian director said in recent days. Then he joked: “Having made a lot of money, a sequel is filmed, right? made a sequel to his highest grossing film, ET… It’s hard to measure up. But I had this amazing cast that became like family. They inspired me for the direction I wanted to give to the story and the characters”. In the first film, Cameron said again, “the plot was simpler”: here, he explained, he wanted to go “deeper into the emotions”, ” in family dynamics and in the responsibility of being parents, also showing the perspective of the children”.

Avatar - The way of water
© Ansa

The cast

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Speaking of the cast, we find old faces and new entries. Reconfirmed Zoe Saldana and Sam Worthington, who play Neytiri and Jake Sully. And again: Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco, Jamie Flatters, Britain Dalton, Trinity Bliss, Joel David Moore, Dileep Rao, Matt Gerald, Cliff Curtis, Oona Chaplin, Vin Diesel. And Kate Winslet, back in a Cameron film 25 years later Titanic. “With Neytiri we lived almost parallel lives – said Zoe Saldana -. In the first story she was fearless, a rebel. When you have children, however, the fear of losing someone you love so much also enters your life. Reading the script, I recognized myself in her”. Kate Winslet also spoke about the film: in returning to work with Cameron, she said, “I expected the best of everything, for her precision, her deep thought. But what attracted me most of all are her characters. He has always written for women not only strong characters but leaders, for their values, their integrity, their abilities”. Sigourney Weaver is also in the cast: she is no longer Dr. Grace Augustine, who died at the end of the first film, but plays Kiri, a teenager adopted by Jake and Neytiri. “I was honored and terrified that he thought of me. To make her I studied the way teenagers move and talk and I thought about who I was at 14 ” he said. On the character of Kiri, Cameron added: through her “I wanted to talk to teenage girls. I too have daughters and have witnessed their journey of finding themselves at that age. I wanted to show different ways for women to be strong.”

The plans for the future

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Avatar – The way of water is the second chapter of a saga that will lead to three more sequels. They should come out in 2024, 2026 and 2028. Director James Cameron developed them simultaneously, proposing to use the most cutting-edge and innovative shooting techniques and technologies for each one, from 3D to performance capture. The second and third films were shot at the same time, while not much is known about the latter yet. Jon Landau, co-producer of the film, however, has spoiled that in the fifth Neytiri will arrive on planet Earth. “What excites me most is that each sequel will take us to new places. Each sequel will introduce us to new cultures and new Na’vi clans. And for me it’s inspiring, because it allows us to reflect our own world. Throughout the process, we want to continue to explore this idea of ​​connectivity on Pandora. We are all connected, whether this connection is through Eywa or otherwise,” he said. However, Landau has ensured that there will be no cliffhangers: each film will be self-contained and can also be seen and appreciated individually. In an interview, however, Cameron confided that the pentalogy project could stop if Avatar – The way of water it will not have the expected returns.

Costs and receipts

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So let’s talk about money. The sequel to Avatars it’s definitely one of the most anticipated films of the year, but it’s also one of the most expensive. There are no official figures, but according to some rumors the budget would be around 250 million dollars: a likely figure, considering the cutting-edge technologies, the special effects, the underwater shots and the prestigious cast. Faced with such a large budget, the takings must be truly extraordinary to be considered up to par. “We have to be the third or fourth highest grossing film in history. That’s the threshold. That’s the break even,” said the director. It is an ambitious goal, it is true, but not impossible to achieve. Just think that the first Avatars has raised about 2.9 billion dollars: it is the highest-grossing film in the history of cinema (in 2019 it had been surpassed by Avengers: Endgame, but in 2021 it was revived in Chinese theaters and regained the primacy). In third place is another Cameron film, Titanic, stuck at $2.1 billion. Will the Canadian director be able to surpass himself?

Avatar – The water way, from the plot to the cast. The film sheet