AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER Needs To Earn At Least $2 Billion Worldwide To Break Even Says James Cameron

Avatar: The Way of Water director James Cameron has revealed that the sequel needs to earn at least $2 billion at the worldwide box office to be deemed profitable, no easy feat for the upcoming movie...

Avatar: The Way of Water is the first of four sequels James Cameron has planned to his record-breaking 2009 movie, though only that and Avatar 3 have been shot. The filmmaker has already confirmed the third movie will be the last if these next two chapters don't live up to financial expectations, and reaching those might be easier said than done. 

Cameron has been working on the sequel since 2013, and recently showed GQ a single effects shot that was numbered 405. "That means there’s been 405 versions of this before it gets to me," he explained, emphasising exactly how much work has gone into the movie. 

That has to mean it's been an expensive undertaking, right? 

"Very [frick]ing [expensive]," Cameron says, adding that he outright told Disney Avatar: The Way of Water represented, "the worst business case in movie history." In order to be profitable, he claims to have been told, "you have to be the third or fourth highest-grossing film in history. That’s your threshold. That’s your break even."

Avatar, Avengers: Endgame, Titanic, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Avengers: Infinity War are the top five highest-grossing movies of all time, and each of them grossed over $2 billion worldwide. That means the Avatar sequel will need to do the same, a tricky undertaking due to the pandemic, decreased interest in 3D, and the possibility of no Chinese release. 

Still, Disney may be thinking beyond box office with this one, taking merchandise sales and an increased interest in Disney World's Pandora into account when considering future plans.

With Avatar: The Way of Water, the franchise reaches new heights as Cameron transports audiences back to the magnificent world of Pandora in a spectacular and stirring action-packed adventure.

Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, the sequel begins to tell the story of the Sully family (Jake, Neytiri, and their kids), the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive,  and the tragedies they endure.

Avatar: The Way of Water splashes down in theaters worldwide on December 16.

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