James Cameron Might End Avatar Series After 3 Movies: "These Are Hideously Expensive"

"These are hideously expensive movies. It was a sketchy business case before the pandemic to make a movie that cost this much."

2009's Avatar is the highest-grossing movie of all time, but writer-director James Cameron isn't sure his sequels, including Avatar: The Way of Water and Avatar 3, will find an audience. Those films were shot back-to-back, but whether or not the series will continue for Avatar 4 and 5--which Cameron has already outlined--depends on the box office success of The Way of Water and Avatar 3.

"The market could be telling us we're done in three months, or we might be semi-done, meaning: 'OK, let's complete the story within movie three, and not go on endlessly', if it's just not profitable," Cameron explained to Total Film.

Since the time Avatar was released more than a decade a go, a lot has changed in the theatrical business. This leads Cameron to wonder if anyone cares about Avatar any longer. Watching movies at home has become more and more popular, but at the same time, Cameron wonders if a big "event" movie like The Way of Water might still find an audience in 2022.

"We're in a different world now than we were when I wrote this stuff, even," Cameron said. "It's the one-two punch: the pandemic and streaming. Or, conversely, maybe we'll remind people what going to the theatre is all about. This film definitely does that," he said. "The question is: how many people give a sh** now?"

Avatar 3, which doesn't have a final title, was filmed back-to-back with The Way of Water. However, Cameron said he's not sure if this movie will be released. It'll all, apparently, depend on how The Way of Water performs in cinemas.

"There are a couple of things that I took out [of The Way Of Water] that I want to shoehorn into movie three, hopefully," he said. "These are hideously expensive movies. It was a sketchy business case before the pandemic to make a movie that cost this much. At this point, we just have to play it out to see what happens. But what I know right now is: we're delivering three hours of a pretty much insane experience [with The Way of Water]."

Avatar: The Way of Water opens in theaters on December 16, just before the holidays. The film brings back the main cast of the original, including Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, and Sigourney Weaver (in a new role), while Kate Winslet joins the cast for the sequel.

In other Avatar news, Ubisoft's new video game, Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, has been delayed.

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