Ever since Disney launched its own streaming service in 2019, the studio has been considering the spinoff potential for all of its major franchises. Aside from expanding universes, the ultimate goal is to drive up the company’s subscriber base. However, we can officially rule out Avatar from getting the same treatment. While speaking with The Los Angeles Times, director James Cameron explained why we’re unlikely to see any Avatar spinoffs on Disney+ in the near future.
Cameron has long been a champion of movie theaters. In fact, this is exactly why the Avatar films are tailor-made to be seen on the biggest screen impossible. That’s one of the reasons he is unwilling to sacrifice any of that magic in the interest of fleshing out the mythology of Pandora via the streaming medium.
“I don’t think [the theatrical experience is] ever going to go away, ’cause it’s something specific,” said Cameron. “The deal we make to go and immerse ourselves without distraction, it’s like doing yoga or taking a walk in the forest for a couple of hours. There’s something about it I still think is sacred.”
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However, this isn’t the only issue at stake. With each Avatar installment costing around $250 million, it seems unlikely that even Disney’s deep pockets could satisfy Cameron’s demands for multiple episodes of a TV series.
“Right now, the economics don’t make sense to spin off any of our CG main characters onto TV,” added Cameron. “But the cost of these things will progressively come down as we introduce machine deep learning into the processes and make them more automated. Ask me again in five years.”
Following the release of Avatar: The Way of Water, which is now the third highest-grossing movie of all time, Cameron is currently hard at work on the remaining sequels. The next installment, Avatar 3, hits theaters on December 20, 2024. But before Avatar 4 arrives in 2026, Cameron reportedly wants to devote some time to directing an adaptation of The Last Train From Hiroshima: The Survivors Look Back, based on the book by author Charles R. Pellegrino. A fifth Avatar film is also scheduled for release in 2028.
Were you hoping to see a few Avatar spinoffs hit Disney+ over the next few years? Let us know in the comment section below!
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