‘Avatar’: James Cameron Reveals the Hectic Order He’s Filming the Sequels In

Avatar is a science fiction film made by legendary filmmaker James Cameron. He dedicated several years to working on this franchise. Only the first installment hit theaters so far, although the sequels are supposedly still happening. Cameron recently explained the order in which he’s filming the Avatar film franchise to fellow filmmaker Denis Villeneuve.

James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’ came out in 2009

'Avatar' sequels filmmaker James Cameron speaking into a mic in front of an 'Avatar' banner
James Cameron | Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

2009’s Avatar made a huge splash in theaters on release, partly because of its inventive use of new technology. It was the highest-grossing film of all time for nearly a decade until Avengers: Endgame came out. However, Avatar hit theaters once again in a re-release, which allowed it to reclaim its title. Cameron also happens to hold the third slot for highest-grossing films with Titanic.

20th Century Fox announced the Avatar sequels before the first installment hit theaters. However, the sequels’ release dates continue to suffer from release delays. Some audiences question whether the series will actually ever happen. It’s one of the most expensive franchises ever made with the five-installment series projected to be somewhere between $1-$2 billion.

James Cameron is filming the sequels in a hectic way

Variety reported on a Zoom conversation between Cameron and Villeneuve in their Directors on Directors series. They talked a lot about Villeneuve’s Dune, as well as Cameron’s Avatar sequels that have been teased for so long. Villeneuve asked Cameron how he paced himself filming the upcoming sequels.

“We mixed the schedules for [Avatar] 2 and 3 together, based on the types of scenes and the environments,” Cameron said. “I said, let’s just treat it like it’s a six-hour miniseries and we’re only going to go to Frankfurt once. We’re going to shoot all the scenes from 2 and 3 at the same time. That was more or less the motif.”

Cameron continued: “Actor availability was an issue as well. Anything that had to be done with a specific actor, we did all the scenes for 2 and 3 together — and a little bit of 4. Because once again, I had to shoot the kids out. They’re allowed to age six years in the middle of the story on page 25 of movie 4. So I needed everything before then, and then everything after, we’ll do later.”

However, Cameron noticeably didn’t speak regarding Avatar 5 because it isn’t as far along.

‘Avatar’ sequels’ release dates

The Avatar sequels have release dates set, although there’s no telling if they will stick. Avatar 2 is currently scheduled for December 16, 2022, which is quickly approaching. Avatar 3 is expected on December 20, 2024, while Avatar 4 is set for December 18, 2026. Finally, Avatar 5 is scheduled for December 22, 2028.

Any of these Avatar sequels’ release dates could change, although Cameron seems set on all winter releases. If these release dates stick, then audiences will have plenty of Avatar to dig their teeth into for the next several years.

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