Filmmaker James Cameron has a proven track record of delivering highly ambitious narratives that also go on to be major financial successes, with his ambitions continuing to surprise fans so much so that when he sent his script for Avatar 4 to executives at 20th Century Studios, the response he got was, "Holy f-ck." With how ambitious the original Avatar was and with reports about Avatar: The Way of Water being that he continues to take his storytelling and technical craft to new heights, this will surely spark excitement among fans about how he will manage to continue to push the cinematic artform to new heights. Avatar: The Way of Water lands in theaters on December 16th.
"I can't tell you the details, but all I can say is that when I turned in the script for 2, the studio gave me three pages of notes," Cameron explained to Collider. "And when I turned in the script for 3, they gave me a page of notes, so I was getting better. When I turned in the script for 4, the studio executive, creative executive over the films wrote me an email that said, 'Holy f-ck.' And I said, 'Well, where are the notes?' And she said, 'Those are the notes.' Because it kind of goes nuts in a good way, right?"
While it's not at all surprising that Cameron plans to continue his narrative for years to come, many filmmakers and studios will wait to see how new films are received before developing the next installment. However, Cameron took a page from Peter Jackson and his work on The Lord of the Rings trilogy and opted to invest in crafting scripts for multiple projects to give his performers a more thorough representation of the trajectory of their characters.
"My model was what Peter Jackson did with The Lord of the Rings, which was a crazy bet in its time. And really hats off to that, that they took that chance to launch on all three of those films," the filmmaker shared. "But he had the books mapped out, so he could always show the actors what they needed to know about their character arc. So I felt I had to do the same thing. I had to play this as if the books already existed. So the only way for us to do that was to write all the scripts and let the actors read all the scripts and see where their characters were going and what it all meant. Not that that's actable in the moment, but I think it's something that the actors could work into their preparation for their characters."
Avatar: The Way of Water lands in theaters on December 16th.
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