‘Avatar: The Way of Water’ D23 footage will be shown

Director James Cameron’s long-awaited “Avatar: The Way of Water” closed the Marvel, Lucasfilm and 20th Century panel at Saturday’s D23 Expo by handing out 3-D glasses to all viewers and six extended scenes from the movie showed .

The new clips were not released online, but stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldaña, Sigourney Weaver and Stephen Lang, and producer Jon Landau were there in person to present the footage. Cameron appeared virtually to present the exclusive D23 clips, which were rich in detail and made extensive and impressive use of 3D technology. Surprisingly, however, Cameron provided no context for what D23 Expo audiences would see: no explanation of who the new characters are, what their relationships are, or how each scene ties into the larger story. Whatever the larger storyline for “The Way of Water” is meant to be remains fairly unclear after presentation, aside from Lang’s (apparently revived) character Quaritch’s Na’vi avatar threatening the family of Worthington’s Sully and Saldaña’s Neytiri.

Thirteen years after the release of the original film, Cameron’s sequel focuses on Pandora’s Oceans as a new performance capture technology was developed specifically for Cameron to shoot underwater scenes. Many of the film’s cast members had to learn how to free dive and hold their breath underwater in order to perform the necessary scenes.

The first scene, revealed at D23 Expo, was the best showcase for the underwater work, featuring several younger Na’vi jumping into a coral reef and swimming around hundreds of vividly rendered aquatic animals. Some of the creatures can clearly breathe underwater, while others had to rise to the surface to gasp for air.

The second scene focused on Kiri, the young Na’vi character played by Weaver, who was watching a video of Weaver’s character from the first film, Dr. Grace Augustine, and then gazes affectionately at Grace’s (possibly unconscious or deceased) Na’vi avatar, the 2009 film is housed in a watery container. Nearby, two other male characters – a Na’vi, a human – speculate as to who fathered Kiri. The implication is that Grace’s Na’vi avatar was pregnant with Kiri when she died in the first film from having sex with another character from that film (specifically Joel David Moore’s Dr. Norm Spellman). But again, the details of what it all actually means had to be filled out another day.

The third scene had by far the most action: several of the children from the first and second scenes are captured by Quaritch’s marines (most if not all are Na’vi avatars), and Sully and Neytiri stealthily attack them, to save her. In the fourth scene, these children listen as Sully and Neytiri argue over whether they should leave home to escape Quaritch’s vendetta against them. The fifth scene was perhaps the most confusing, in which one of Sully and Neytiri’s children is flogged by the chief of a sub-group of aquatic green-skinned, finned Na’vi Na’vi. The chief explains that killing is forbidden and Sully’s son belongs to the Na’vi clan, who are murderers, so he is an outcast. The son tries to speak for himself, but everyone around him, including his parents, scolds him for speaking inappropriately. In the final scene, shown at D23 Expo, the kids are back in the water learning how to befriend larger aquatic wildlife to learn how to ride them, similar to the flight sequences from the film by 2009

Returning cast members include Moore, CCH Pounder, Giovanni Ribisi and Matt Gerald, and newcomers include Kate Winslet, Cliff Curtis, Edie Falco, Jemaine Clement, Michelle Yeoh and Vin Diesel.

The film’s first teaser trailer was shown in theaters ahead of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness before its online premiere, showing a selection of scenes from the sequel, backed by a tranquil score by Simon Franglen, the composer of the movie

20th Century Studios produced the film, with Cameron and Jon Landau producing on a budget of approximately $250 million. Three additional films for the franchise are currently in development, with release dates set for 2024, 2026 and 2028.

The Way of Water is slated to hit theaters on December 16th.

https://variety.com/2022/film/news/avatar-way-of-water-d23-1235337016/ ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’ D23 footage will be shown

Charles Jones

Charles Jones is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Charles Jones joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: charlesjones@24ssports.com.

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