“Avatar” has become the Nickelback or Creed of movies; no one wants to admit they liked the movie, meanwhile reviews don’t lie (generally positive with an 83% RT score), and the box office numbers are obviously an apex that may never be beat (the highest grossing film of all time at $2.7 billion). The other knock on the James Cameron-directed 3D spectacle is that it is not at all culturally influential. Having always been lukewarm on the film — the visuals are astonishing, there’s no argument — I have no horse in this race and neither agree or disagree with many of these claims. But I still can’t help, but wonder if they’re shortsighted and if a different generation of moviegoers love “Avatar” like many of them adore the “Star Wars” prequels (no, really, they do).
Neither here nor there, Cameron’s long-delayed “Avatar” films — I can’t even go back and look at how many times the films were delayed, but last time I checked they were due for a Christmas 2018 release — are finally getting a new release date. Well, that’s if it can stick to the date anyhow.
So, what is 20th Century Fox, Cameron’s plans? Four, count ‘em, four “Avatar” films starting 2020.
“Avatar 2” — December 18, 2020
“Avatar 3”— December 17, 2021
“Avatar 4 — December 20, 2024
“Avatar 5”— December 19, 2025.
Is four more “Avatar” films excessive? Even for the most ardent supporter of the series it’s hard to argue against it. To the earlier point, will fans still care about “Avatar” in 2020? Keep in mind this will be eleven years after the fact that the 3D behemoth became a box-office juggernaut in 2009. And can you imagine if the first one flops, what then? Cameron has said in the past that the four films will be stand-alone picture, but together will create a big saga.
Given the North America’s reluctance to see sequels released after the fact, (see “Zoolander 2” and “Independence Day 2” flopping in 2016 for two examples), it’s easy to conceive of a scenario where “Avatar” just doesn’t track in the same way Stateside. However, internationally is a totally different scenario, the movie earned a whopping 72.7%
($2,09 billion) of its earnings overseas and with China’s market as big as it is now, “Avatar” could still be massive worldwide. Time will tell so mark your calendars now. And wait for the showdown that will be “Star Wars” films released around Christmas at the same time versus “Avatar” movies. Our guess is the franchise without momentum will have to blink. However, the main question will be: will the planet exist by now and or will North Korea take over the release at that time.