Avatar Land ground

After years of rumor, conjecture and controversy, January 10, 2014 marks the day Disney finally broke ground on the brand-new Avatar Land. It’ll be a full day- and nighttime area of Animal Kingdom in Orlando, FL co-designed and imagined by James Cameron himself. The aim is to have the area open in 2017, which would be between the planned release dates of Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 in December 2016 and 2017.

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Avatar

Avatar drew a lot of story comparisons to Dances With Wolves and Pocahontas when it first came out, but James Cameron thinks the sequels will put a different cinematic classic in mind. At a recent press conference, he said that while the first Avatar was “very Jake-centric,” Avatars 2 through 3 would be more like a Godfather-esque saga centered on Jake’s family.

Hit the jump for his comments, plus updates on the films’ shooting location and release date.

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Years Living Dangerously

Executive producers James Cameron, Jerry Weintraub, and Arnold Schwarzenegger have recruited an all-star cast for an important documentary event. Years of Living Dangerously will air on Showtime in April 2014; it features major celebrities talking to real people who have been negatively effected by global warming. Jessica Alba, Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, America Ferrara, Harrison Ford, Michael C. Hall, Olivia Munn and Ian Somerhalder are just a few of the celebrities who travel the world learning about this issue and, below, you can see the the first trailer.  Read More »

Stephen Lang Avatar

James Cameron is performing another resurrection with his sequels to the biggest movie of all time, Avatar. After already revealing Sigourney Weaver’s character, who died in the first film, would be returning, it now seems a second deceased character will return in Avatar 2. Colonel Miles Quaritch, played by Stephen Lang, will return not only for Avatar 2, but Avatar 3 and 4 as well.

“I’m not going to say exactly HOW we’re bringing him back, but it’s a science fiction story, after all,” Cameron told Deadline. “His character will evolve into really unexpected places across the arc of our new three-film saga.”

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avatartank

Briefly: We often get a bit suspicious when actors announce filming dates, but in the case of Avatar and Sam Worthington, he might know what’s really up. On an interview with Australian radio station Nova 96.9, he said that James Cameron will shoot Avatar 2 starting in October 2014. More specifically, he said, ”we are going to start this time next year and we will do two, three and four. I’ll be grateful if it finishes.”

Quotes are going around saying that “the second, third and fourth films will be filmed in their entirety within a year of the beginning of the production.” I haven’t heard Worthington’s interview or seen direct quotes to that effect (that one is a paraphrase that is being passed around) but that does seem like a logical step. It’s been four years since the release of Avatar, and the second through fourth films are slated for each December from 2016 to 2018.

'Avatar Land' at DisneyWorld's Animal Kingdom

Update: Disney has revealed a 2017 projected opening date for the land. All three Avatar sequels are scheduled to begin shooting next year simultaneously, and the announced release date for Avatar 2 is currently December 2016. So it looks like the new land will be ready to promote the third and fourth films, and possibly the home video release of the sequel.

Update #2: A video is now available featuring James Cameron, who describes the creation of Avatar Land. Watch it at the bottom of the post below.

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Arnold Tank Rides 2

Even if audiences didn’t flock to see Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Last Stand, they might be a lot more interested to see Schwarzenegger re-team with the guy who helped define him as an action star.

And so we have a new report that Arnie will be the bad guy in Avatar 2 for director James Cameron, who directed the actor in The Terminator, Terminator 2, and True Lies.

Talk of a potential fourth collaboration between the two sprang up in 2011, when they journeyed together to visit a rain forest in Brazil, where Cameron said he wanted to bring the Avatar 2 cast for training. As Cameron took more and more time to put Avatar 2 together, that talk died down. Now that he’s getting closer to a shoot, with a crop of new writers working on sequel scripts, the “Arnie in Avatar 2” talk is back.

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Gravity

James Cameron is a filmmaker with high standards. His last two films were both the highest grossing film of all time and each took multiple years to get just right. In the interim, he’s been working to advance performance capture technology, high frame rate technology, 3D technology and probably more. So he knows what’s up. Cameron also helped director Alfonso Cuaron overcome some technical obstacles on his new film, Gravity. He’s an intelligent guy.

Gravity hits theaters October 4, and praise for it has been over the moon. No praise, however, has been higher than Cameron’s. The director of Avatar, Titanic, Aliens and Terminator recently saw the film and called it the “best space film ever done.” Read More »

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