It's almost fitting that one of the film productions that had to shut down during this pandemic was the Avatar sequels. Those movies have been some of the most nebulous productions in all of Hollywood for the last decade. James Cameron kept telling us he was working on them, but for years they continued to be years away. There was some questions as to whether or not we'd ever see them, or how many there would be if and when we did.
Release dates kept getting pushed back and pushed back and production that was supposed to start never did. Until it did. We finally got to a point where two Avatar sequels were actually being made, humans and computer were hard at work, and then everything had to shut down. You'd be forgiven for thinking these movies were cursed, but now it appears the curse may have been lifted as producer Jon Landeau has confirmed that production will be restarting in New Zealand, and it's starting back up next week. He also shared a first look at a couple of ships we'll see in the movie.
New Zealand was a country that went into complete lockdown when the pandemic started and while there was a time that production could have continued, people coming into New Zealand from outside the nation would have had to stay in two week quarantine upon arrival, so it got to the point where filming, when it could have been possible, wasn't functional, and thus production was closed. However, it looks like the island nation is now coming out the other side, at least enough to let the Avatar team into the country, and that means that the Avatar sequels can get down to business
Production taking place right now is focused on the next two Avatar films. Since both movies are filming concurrently, its unclear just how much of the next movie has been completed. It's a potentially important question because it may determine if Avatar 2 is going to see yet another release delay. Right now Avatar 2 is scheduled to hit theaters in December of 2021, which should be far enough out that this delay of about two months shouldn't be a problem that can't be overcome, but it's simply difficult to tell.
Odds are production will be getting underway slowly as there will likely be requirements on set to attempt social distancing to the degree that is possible. The number of people on set will probably be held to a minimum, though that will probably still be a lot of people.
At this point, even if there are further delays, the more important thing, at least if you're excited about Avatar, is that these movies really are happening and we will see them. If you've waited this long, you can probably wait a bit longer with the confidence that the wait will truly be over one day. At least until we wait and see if the Avatar 4 and 5 actually get underway as planned.
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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.