Official Avatar Concept Art Is Surprising Stuff

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Having received two pieces of concept art for James Cameron's Avatar, the stereophiles at Marketsaw approached Fox to see if they could legitimately run the images. Thankfully, Fox said yes. You can see both of the pictures below the break – though you should be warned that they do reveal some not-really-spoilerish details of the narrative (and I do so too, in providing context).

If you get a slightly King Kong vibe off of this art, you wouldn't be the only one. Also note that Peter Jackson has written the foreword to The Art of Avatar, the book in which these images – and many, many more – will soon be published.

Here, in the first image you see the full design of a Powersuit. It was just a couple of days back that we saw a partial photograph of a practical suit built for the film. Looking at the full representation here will give you a better sense of its scale.


It seems this particular piece of concept art was well preserved in the final build. Also note the crashed vehicle in the background. From what familiarity I have with the film (from talking to folk, stalking Marketsaw as they stalk Cameron and reading the scriptment and notes) I'd guess that this burning craft is a Samson, a light and fast transit ship with only light armament.

The second image is all new stuff. I think its probably best that you take a look at it before I discuss any of the details.


This one appears to show action from a set piece rather near the end of proceedings. Fleeing in the foreground is another one of the futuristic flying machines (most likely the Dragon Gunship, I think) and behind it is one of the native beasts of Pandora. This one, I think, is a Bansheeray.

There great amount of Pandoran flora and fauna was dreamt up by Cameron to create a very complex alien ecosystem and I think he's planning to leave it in the background, behind the drama and characterisation. Thankfully, it shouldn't all be so alien that we won't be able to understand it – and indeed, the human characters who come to this strange world seem to mostly comprehend the otherness of what they find by referring to it in familiar, Earthly terms.

From Bansheerays to Direwolves, the Leonopteryx to the Direhorse, and of course including the Na'vi, the humanoid natives at the heart of the matter, there's an awful lot Avatar alienage, the vast majority of it still to be unveiled.