The next of James Cameron’s Avatar sequels are officially off and rolling, with visual effects production in full swing today at the Oscar-winning Weta Digital in New Zealand. Cameron changed the game for movies that heavily feature visual effects and performance capture, paving the way for films like Luc Besson’s Valerian and the new Planet of the Apes trilogy. Funny enough, Weta is getting an assist this time around from motion capture tech used in War for the Planet of the Apes.
It’s a rare thing in Hollywood for a sequel to come close to, or even end up being better than, the original, but James Cameron effortlessly managed that feat with 1991’s Terminator 2: Judgement Day. The film sees Arnold Schwarzenegger return as the sinister Terminator android, but this time around his intentions are much more heroic. If you’ve been itching to watch this movie on the big screen in as immersive an experience as possible, Cameron and co. have cooked up a re-release of the movie in his new favorite medium: 3-D.
Well, it’s official. Whether the world is prepared for it or not, James Cameron and co. are going to start production on Avatar 2 this fall. Yep, you read that right, the on-again-off-again sequel(s) project will finally start coming to fruition, provided international calamity doesn’t strike our shores in the coming months.
It’s a debate as old as time. Or at least as old as James Cameron’s Titanic, which came out in 1997, so not that old, but still. “They both could have fit on that door!” is the rallying cry of Titanic truthers, who believe that the door (which isn’t actually a door (it’s ajar! just kidding)) that Rose (Kate Winslet) floats on while Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) freezes to death in the subzero waters of the North Atlantic was big enough to hold both of them. Mythbusters even dedicated an episode to it. But Cameron himself is still holding fast to the movie’s original ending, much like Jack’s hands after they froze.
Not long ago, we wondered aloud why James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’ had been largely forgotten about only five years later, despite being the biggest movie of all-time. It doesn’t even seem like there is a lot of anticipation for ‘Avatar 2’, which Cameron is developing concurrently with Parts 3 & 4. Well, people will suddenly have a little more time to start getting excited for an ‘Avatar 2’, because Cameron announced today that the upcoming sequel has been pushed back a full year, to December 2017.
James Cameron doesn’t lack for confidence. And why should he? This is the guy who made the biggest movie in the history of the universe, and then he topped himself and made the biggest movie in the history of the universe a second time. If there is anything in the world of movies James Cameron can’t do, he hasn’t found it yet.