James Cameron has recently revealed the reason for the long runtime of his Avatar sequel which clocks in at more than three hours. The director in the latest issue of Total Film coming out on Thursday said the runtime for Avatar: The Way Of Water was due to the sequel’s emphasis on character.
During a latest interview for the magazine’s cover story, Cameron explained, “‘The goal is to tell an extremely compelling story on an emotional basis.” He added, “I would say the emphasis in the new film is more on character, more on the story, more on relationships, more on emotion. We didn’t spend as much time on relationships and emotion in the first film as we do in the second film, and it’s a longer film because there are more characters to service. There’s more story to service.”
The sequel follows Jake Sully, played by Sam Worthington and Neytiri aka Zoe Saldana who have five children after falling in love in the original film. Cameron then clarified, “People say, ‘Oh my God, a family story from Disney? Just what we want…’ This isn’t that kind of family story. This is a family story like how The Sopranos is a family story.”
Zoe and Australian actor Sam also commented on the new family dynamic in the sequel with Jake and Neytiri as parents. They are ‘compromised on a much deeper level,’ said Zoe. ‘When you have children and you care for their welfare, different emotions creep in,’ she added. Sam was more straightforward and said, ‘They’re the parents from hell if you have a go at their kids!’
Avatar: The Way Of Water is scheduled to be released in theatres on December 16. Avatar 3 has completed principal filming and is scheduled for release on December 20, 2024. Subsequent sequels are scheduled to be released in December 2026 and December 2028. The 2009 film Avatar during its theatrical run became the highest-grossing film of all time and has earned $2.9 billion at the worldwide box office.