‘Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl’ actor Zoe Saldana has reacted to the delay of three upcoming sequels to ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’. Taking to her Instagram stories, the actress made a reference to the recently revealed news that the three scheduled sequels to ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’ from last year have been postponed.
“Great! I’m gonna be 53 when the last avatar comes out,” Saldana, 44, jokingly wrote above the news headline, adding an emoji of a shocked face, reported People. “I was 27 when I shot the very first @avatar movie,” she added with a bespectacled disguised face emoji.
As per People, Disney, the distributor behind the hit sci-fi franchise, announced Tuesday that Avatar 3 will arrive in theaters Dec. 19, 2025; Avatar 4 on Dec. 21, 2029; and Avatar 5 on Dec. 19, 2031, according to Variety and The Hollywood Reporter. Saldana has played Neytiri, a bow-and-arrow-wielding Na’vi warrior, and mother in James Cameron’s Oscar-winning ‘Avatar’, released in 2009 and is still reportedly the world’s No. 1 highest-grossing movie of all time (not adjusting for inflation). That first installment began filming in 2007.
If ‘Avatar 5’ will serve as the franchise’s finale and its purported 2031 release date hold, the entire on-screen series will span 22 years. As per People, following the news of the delays, producer Jon Landau tweeted that each film in the Avatar franchise “is an exciting but epic undertaking that takes time to bring to the quality level we as filmmakers strive for and audiences have come to expect. The team is hard at work and can’t wait to bring audiences back to Pandora in December 2025.”
Sam Worthington’s Jake Sully, the film’s protagonist, won’t be the narrator of subsequent tales, according to writer-director James Cameron, who also hinted at this while keeping production and story details under wraps. He said that Lo’ak, Jake’s teenage son who was first mentioned in The Way of Water, will serve as the narrator in Avatar 3 instead. Lo’ak is played by Britain Dalton. In a behind-the-scenes featurette for Avatar: The Way of Water, Saldana and Worthington discussed how much had changed in the years between filming the original Avatar and its sequel, including becoming parents — just like their on-screen characters, reported People.
“Something really special happened when we reunited for Avatar 2,” said Saldana, adding that the sequel’s “stakes are higher” because it’s centered on a Na’vi family. (Saldana shares twin sons Cy Aridio and Bowie Ezio, 8, and son Zen Anton Hilario, 6, with husband Marco Perego-Saldana.) “Zoe and me were always just very close, and that gave us absolute freedom to bounce off each other and just enjoy the ride,” said Worthington.
Saldana also told PEOPLE how she prepared to play Neytiri again after years between filming Avatar and its sequel. “It did take a little more time for my body to assimilate, to return to some of the exercises and the practices,” she said. “I’m proud of the fact that [Cameron] has lost bets of whether or not I can hit a mark [with my archery]. I think the first time was a hundred bucks?”