New release dates announced for James Cameron's Avatar sequels

Ben Bussey
UK Movies Writer
2009’s ‘Avatar,’ still the biggest box office hit of all time. Will the sequels follow suit? (Credit: 20th Century Fox)

If you’ve been longing to return to Pandora, you’re going to have to keep being patient – but at least now we know when you can expect to go back.

Writer-director James Cameron and his team are currently at work on the ‘Avatar’ sequels, shooting an eye-opening four films back-to-back, and now the official ‘Avatar’ Facebook page has announced when the long-delayed follow-up films will hit cinemas.

Along with an understandably sizeable cast and crew photo, we are told that the second ‘Avatar’ movie will finally arrive on 18 December 2020 – almost exactly 11 years after the original opened, on 17 December 2009.

The third ‘Avatar’ will come a year later on 17 December 2021, then there’ll be a three year wait until the fourth film on 20 December 2024. The series will finally come to a close with the fifth ‘Avatar’ on 19 December 2025.

James Cameron clearly isn’t a filmmaker who likes to be rushed – but given that he’s responsible for the two highest grossing hits of all time, he’s naturally earned himself a little elbow room. In case you need reminding of those eye-watering box office hauls, ‘Avatar’ is the highest grossing movie ever at $2.78 billion (approx £2.17 billion), whilst the long-running number one, 1997’s ‘Titanic,’ is in second place at $2.186 billion (approx £1.71 billion).

James Cameron directing Sam Worthington on the set of ‘Avatar’ (credit: 20th Century Fox)

Cameron’s vision for the ‘Avatar’ series has grown with time, the writer-director having originally envisaged it as trilogy. The two sequels had originally been scheduled for release in 2014 and 2015 respectively, but in 2012 Cameron announced his intention to make a fourth film. Then, in February 2016, Cameron declared his intent to shoot four sequels simultaneously, with the first initially scheduled for release in 2018.

‘Avatar’ actors Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver and Stephen Lang are all back on the follow-ups, and Cameron is said to be pushing for the films to screen in cinemas utilising a new glasses-free 3D system.

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