It’s been rumored for some time, and now it’s official: Avatar will be four movies. These films will probably end up costing about a bazillion dollars total, but it has now been announced that there will be four movies total in what could end up being the sci-fi franchise to rival Star Wars.
As Variety reports, the plan is to shoot all three movies at the same time, which is how Peter Jackson made the Lord of the Rings trilogy. (The fourth Avatar movie is rumored to be a prequel.) The industry trade also tells us that production on the next Avatars will begin next year, with the first sequel schedule for release in December 2016, the second in December 2017, and the third following that.
Reports have surfaced that Josh Friedman, writer of War of the Worlds and the Sarah Connor Chronicles, will be helping Cameron with the Avatar scripts, and also onboard will be Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, the screenwriting team behind Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Cameron has reportedly been working on the screenplays in New Zealand, where he just bought some land and will be filming the Avatar sequels at Weta, Peter Jackson’s FX company.
Reports tell us that much of the next Avatar film will take place underwater, and a special camera is in development that will combine live action and CGI in 3D in real time, and underwater to boot! Can’t say Cameron’s not ambitious.