Avatar's Sigourney Weaver Explains Why The Way Of Water Is A Very Personal Movie For James Cameron

Sigourney Weaver in Avatar 2
(Image credit: Disney)

It took James Cameron more than a decade to finally bring us the long promised Avatar sequels. The director has spoken previously about the trouble he had writing the films, and how the planned trilogy expanded into a total of five Avatar movies. Now Sigourney Weaver has perhaps given us a hint as to part of the reason writing the films was so hard. They’re really personal stories for Cameron. 

We’ve seen in the trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water that the main characters from the first film, Jake and Netyiri, have built a family, and from things James Cameron has said, we know that this family will be at the core of all the forthcoming sequels. Sigourney Weaver tells Variety that’s what makes the films so personal for James Cameron, because the family in the movie is inspired by his own. According to the actress… 

The story is about family, about our families trying to stay together [and] the lengths to which we all go to protect each other and protect the place where we live. It’s very much based on Jim’s family and his joy in the family; and also, how vulnerable you are when you have children

The first trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water is mostly just a lot of beautiful imagery from the movie, but it does include one line of dialogue from the film, Jake saying that their family “is our fortress.” It certainly backs up Sigourney Weaver’s comments here about the importance of family that will be at the core of the movie. 

While Sigourney Weaver’s character from the original film died, we’ve known for years that the actress would be returning for the sequels. The answer as to how that would be possible has only created more questions than answers, as Weaver will be playing Kiri, a teenage Na’vi who is a member of Jake and Netyiri’s family. 

Anybody who has kids certainly understands the idea that we become more vulnerable once we have children. I’ve had difficulty with any scene in any movie that shows a child in jeopardy since having kids myself. It’s almost a foregone conclusion that the children in this family will be at the heart of the conflict in Avatar: The Way of Water, and the film will deal with how this impacts both the children themselves as well as the parents who are so focused on trying to keep them safe. 

So much of the talk surrounding the Avatar sequel has been around the technical aspects of production, like the extensive underwater filming, that very little is known about the actual story being told. We’ll likely get one more trailer before Avatar: The Way of Water arrives this December that will hopefully give us some more specifics. The original Avatar is in theaters now.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.