AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER Set To Earn Less Than AVATAR And Unlikely To Be 2022's Biggest Movie

Early box office projects are in for this December's Avatar: The Way of Water, and all signs point to the blockbuster making less than 2009's Avatar. Is that cause for concern? Find more details here...

Avatar was released in 2009 to positive reviews and the sort of box office earnings studio bosses would do anything for. Ultimately, the 3D blockbuster would go on to break every record imaginable, becoming the highest-grossing movie of all time in the process.

While it briefly lost that title to Avengers: Endgame, a re-release in China during the pandemic saw the James Cameron-helmed sci-fi adventure retake the #1 spot. Last weekend, the remastered version of Avatar earned an additional $30.5 million, but how will the upcoming sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water, perform this December?

Not quite as well as its predecessor, as it happens. 

According to Variety, current projections point to the movie earning around $650 million at the domestic box office. That's less than the $772 million grossed by Avatar, with the fact that there's no longer much interest in 3D a major contributing factor. 

While Avatar: The Way of Water could exceed expectations, the fact that so many studios attempted to cash in on Avatar's success with lazy 3D conversions is what ultimately killed the format. Cameron knocking it out of the park could bring people back, but perhaps not enough to help this sequel surpass the first movie. 

Interestingly, this predicted number also means that Avatar is unlikely to become the biggest title of 2022. 

That title is currently held by Top Gun: Maverick, a movie that's grossed $700 million in North America and $1.5 billion worldwide. Heading into this year, none of us could have guessed that the Top Gun sequel would shoot down Avatar: The Way of Water's box office prospects, but the Tom Cruise-led blockbuster has exceeded everyone's expectations. 

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever also promises to break box office records, so it promises to be a very interesting few months!

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

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