Two more se­quels

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - MOVIES - By STEVEN ZEITCHIK

JAMES Cameron has set his re­turn trip to Pan­dora.

Fox an­nounced on Wed­nes­day morn­ing that Avatar 2 and Avatar 3, the se­quels to last year’s sci­ence-fic­tion block­buster, will be James Cameron’s next films, with the di­rec­tor be­gin­ning work on the scripts in early 2011.

Pro­duc­tion on Avatar 2 could be­gin as soon as late 2011, with the movie likely in the­atres in De­cem­ber 2014, ac­cord­ing to Fox.

Al­though it was widely be­lieved that Cameron had many ideas for Avatar 2 and wanted to be­gin work on it shortly, the fact that it would be his pri­or­ity – and that the stu­dio was plan­ning on a third film as well – rep­re­sents a ma­jor devel­op­ment.

With his heav­ily de­vel­oped story lines and in­ten­sive use of new technology, Cameron can of­ten take a decade or longer be­tween films.

Fox said in its an­nounce­ment that Cameron has not made a de­ci­sion about whether to shoot the two films back-to­back but that he well could, which would al­low Avatar 3 to come out as early as De­cem­ber 2015.

There was lit­tle de­tail about the plot for the new movies. Avatar ended with Jake (Sam Wor­thing­ton) join­ing the Na’avi and fight­ing off the in­va­sion of hu­man armed forces led by Col Quar­itch (Stephen Lang).

Cameron did say in a state­ment that the movies “will be self-con­tained sto­ries that also ful­fil a greater story arc” and that “we will not back off the throt­tle of Avatar’s vis­ual and emo­tional horse­power and will con­tinue to ex­plore its themes and char­ac­ters.”

It’s also not known how many of the orig­i­nal cast mem­bers will re­turn, though it is all but as­sured both movies will be in 3-D. Cameron’s writ­ing part­ners also re­main a ques­tion; Laeta Kalo­gridis ( Shut­ter Is­land) con­trib­uted heav­ily to the script for the first film.

The orig­i­nal Avatar, which came out in De­cem­ber and played through the win­ter, was a global phe­nom­e­non that grossed about US$2.8bil (RM8.3bil) world­wide. Cameron’s work will also be com­ing back to the big screen with a 3-D rere­lease of Ti­tanic, which is ex­pected to hit the­atres in April 2012. – Los An­ge­les Times/McClatchyTri­bune In­for­ma­tion Ser­vices

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