James Cameron Wouldn’t Cut Down One Avatar Scene Despite Studio Request

James Cameron wasn’t having it when the studio tried to get him to trim down a scene from his 2009 sci-fi blockbuster Avatar. Specifically, the scene in question presumably didn’t advance the plot, yet it is by no means a short scene. Be that as it may, Cameron stuck to his guns and the scene stayed intact. In the end, things worked out just fine.

The reveal came as part of James Cameron’s new Master Class. A piece breaking down the filmmaker’s online class explained that the studio expressed a desire to see the set-piece involving the lead character Jake Sully learning to fly a Mountain Banshee cut down. Apparently, they didn’t feel the scene, which is far from short, advanced the plot. But Cameron simply wanted to see it. So it stayed in Avatar. Cameron had the following to say.

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“There are a lot of rules and advisories about why you put things in movies, and that they should all serve a purpose. Except, they don’t. Sometimes it should just be something you want to see as a filmmaker…and sometimes the only way to see it is to show it.”

It is difficult to argue with results. Avatar was released in December 2009 and proceeded to go on a legendary, record-breaking run at the box office. It now stands as the highest-grossing movie in cinema history, earning more than $2.8 billion worldwide to date. It surrendered the record for a brief time to Avengers: Endgame. However, a recent re-release in China put James Cameron’s movie back atop the mountain. Speaking further, Cameron elaborated on his logic when it comes to scenes such as the one he refused to cut down.

“If I want to see it, there are lots of people who are going to want to see it. And they want to see it for itself, not because of a purpose. The purpose is to be present; to be in that world.”

Speaking of being in that world, we will soon be returning to the world of Pandora after more than a decade away. Avatar 2 is finally wrapped and is currently in post-production. It is one of four, yes four, sequels that James Cameron is currently working on. That is part of why it took so long to get the sequel going in the first place. They were originally set up at Fox but, after Disney purchased most of the studio’s media assets, they changed hands. Disney now stands to potentially make billions from the franchise.

Aside from the movies, a trailer for the video game Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora was revealed during E3 as well. So it seems the franchise, after consisting of just one movie for a very long time, is poised to greatly expand in the coming years. Avatar 2 is currently set to hit theaters on December 16, 2022. Avatar 3 will follow on December 20, 2024, with Avatar 4 on December 18, 2026, and Avatar 5 rounding things out on December 22, 2028. This news comes to us via /Film.

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