Sequel to hit “Avatar” finally opens 13 years after original film

Actress Zoe Saldana at the world premiere of “Avatar: Rise of Water” in London

By Hanna Rantala

LONDON (Reuters) – Thirteen years after James Cameron brought the biggest blockbuster of all time to the silver screen, the director finally released the long-awaited sequel to “Avatar” on Tuesday in London.

“Avatar: The Way of Water” takes audiences back to the enchanting world of Pandora, where in the first film the native blue Na’vi people fought against human colonists seeking to exploit the moon’s natural resources.

Set over a decade later, “The Way to Water” sees actors Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana return as Jake Sully and Neytiri, now parents of five.

Their peaceful life in the forest paradise is interrupted by the return of the “Sky People”, the Na’vi name for humans, who are after Sully. To protect their family and tribe, Sully, Neytiri and their children flee to distant territory and seek refuge with the oceanic Metkayina clan.

With bodies and skills suited to life in the forest, the family must quickly learn the ways of the water to survive while facing the threat of their enemy.

“This has been a decade-long labor of love, so it’s great to finally be able to share it,” Worthington told Reuters at the film’s world premiere.

Saldana said reprising her role was “exciting”.

“It was exciting, it was also very scary because obviously Jim raised the stakes for himself, which meant everyone had a new challenge to deal with,” he said.

Sigourney Weaver plays Kiri, Neytiri and Sully’s adopted daughter. His biological mother is Dr. Grace Augustine, who Weaver played in the original film.

“The whole thing was an incredible adventure,” he said.

Released in 2009, “Avatar” is the highest-grossing film of all time with more than $2.9 billion in global ticket sales.

Four “Avatar” movies are planned through 2028.

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