'Avatar 2' Producer Teases New Story Details As Production Resumes In New Zealand

Last week, we learned from Avatar producer Jon Landau that the long-awaited Avatar 2 would be resuming production down in New Zealand after being put on hiatus due to the coronavirus outbreak. Now that the film is back to shooting, Landau has teased what's in store for Avatar 2 with some new details about the general story that will unfold in the sequel.

Radio New Zealand (via Collider) caught up with Jon Landau as production started back up. Being a smaller country than the United States, the government in New Zealand has been able to handle coronavirus more effectively, and they've made both Jon Landau and director James Cameron feel very safe about returning to work. Landau said:

"We feel very comfortable because of the actions of your government and also the responsibility the people took to really curb the virus there. So we feel we're coming back to the safest place in the world possible thanks to a team of people that we've worked with. We believe we have a very thoughtful, detailed and diligent safety plan that will keep everybody as safe as possible in these unprecedented times."

During the hiatus, new photos from the set of Avatar 2 were revealed, teasing aquatic vehicles that appear to belong to the humans still on Pandora. But they won't be the only ones exploring the seas of the lush planet. We've heard that Avatar 2 will feature a lot of aquatic environments, and Landau has elaborated a bit on why that is. The producer said:

"This is the story of the Sully family and what one does to keep their family together. Jake and Neytiri have a family in this movie, they are forced to leave their home, they go out and explore the different regions of Pandora, including spending quite a bit of time on the water, around the water, in the water."

That's not much to go on, but it does indicate that the Na'vi are still in danger from the military, and the sequel will continue a storyline that echoes the plight of Native Americans, or really any immigrant that has been forced to become a refugee.

The question that a lot of people have been asking is whether or not the same audiences who turned Avatar into one of the biggest box office earners of all time are still curious about Avatar 2 after all these years. By the time the movie arrives in theaters next winter, it will have been 12 years since the release of the first movie. Will the interest still be there? Landau doesn't seem to be worried about it, saying:

"I think, why do people turn to entertainment today, more so than ever? I think it's to escape, to escape the world we're in, to escape the other pressures they have in their lives... I think with Avatar, we have an opportunity to allow people to escape to an incredible world with incredible characters that they will follow, in much the same way as Peter Jackson was able to do with Lord of the Rings, so that's what we're looking forward to doing."

The Avatar sequels are bringing back the original movie's cast members Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Joel David Moore, Dileep Rao, Stephen Lang, Sigourney Weaver, and Matt Gerald. New cast members include Kate Winslet, Edie Falco, Michelle Yeoh, Vin Diesel, Jemaine Clement, and Oona Chaplin. There's also a whole group of young actors playing the Na'vi children of Jake and Neytiri in the movie.

Avatar 2 is aiming for a December 27, 2021 release in theaters, and three sequels are slated to follow in December 2023, December 2025, and December 2027.