Avatar: The Way of Water has quite the legacy to live up to as the sequel to the highest grossing movie of all-time. Having said that, the movie is off to a pretty solid start, having grossed over $400 million worldwide so far. James Cameron is certainly thankful and he’s saying exactly that to everybody that has already seen the film.
Fans have been waiting for well over a decade to see a new Avatar movie and considering what a spectacle the first one was, there were certainly going to be people who didn’t want to wait past the first weekend. They turned out, something that still isn’t a guarantee in the post-pandemic landscape of cinema. But for something like Avatar there is certainly a view that it’s a film that almost requires a theatrical experience. For those people, James Cameron took to Instagram to say thank you. Check out his full message below.
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Avatar: The Way of Water brought in $134 million domestically in its opening weekend which, when combined with international numbers, brings its global take so far to $441 million. That number is actually considered to be low, as expectations for Avatar 2 were that the movie would do even better. In an absolute sense, that’s a massive number. The Avatar sequel is already the 13th highest grossing movie of the year domestically and the tenth highest worldwide. But considering what the first Avatar did at the box office, it is a significant decline.
The real test for The Way of Water will likely be this coming weekend. We’re used to seeing blockbuster tentpole movies put up staggering numbers on opening weekend, but then fall off sharply as the majority of people who need to see the film have already done so.
There’s a school of thought that thinks Avatar 2 may see a significantly lower than normal drop off in the weeks to come, as many viewers are waiting to see the movie until they can see it under optimum conditions. Some people may have neglected to see the movie opening weekend because it would have meant getting tickets in a bad seat and instead bought tickets for that perfect seat in the perfect format at a later date.
This combined with the fact that the sequel is likely seeing a lot of extra money spent on 3D and large format screens could mean that the Avatar sequel will have more theatrical staying power than your average blockbuster. The big winner, however, will be return ticket sales. If people love the movie so much that they want to see it again, especially since they won’t be able to see it outside a theater in a large format 3D experience, we could see Avatar rake in cash at a steady pace for weeks or months to come.
And of course, the better The Way of Water does in theaters, the better sign it is for Avatar 3 when that movie comes out in a couple years. When it’s all said and done, James Cameron is going to have a lot more people to thank.
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CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis. Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.