Will “Avatar: The Way of Water” Sink or Swim?

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On Dec. 16, almost 13 years since the release of Avatar (2009), the story of the Na’Vi will continue in the sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water. Set almost a decade after the events of the first film, the newest Avatar is said to follow the story of Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), and their family as they face the problems arising in Pandora.

With little revealed in the official trailer, this soon-to-be sequel has been met with mixed reactions from fans. On one hand, those who have waited years for another Avatar film are buzzing with excitement as the release date grows closer. On the other hand, some believe an additional film was unnecessary in the first place.

“I think a lot of movies are trying to do sequels in order to capitalize on something they already know is popular,” junior Saoirse O’Hair said.

I don’t exactly know what I’m going to be walking into. Sequels tend to be a hit or a miss.”

— Saoirse O'Hair

Despite this, fans in favor of the release prepare by rewatching the first movie, picking out details and plot points they hope to see expanded upon in the upcoming continuation.

“I hope they explore the reactions of the humans and the state of the earth with the Na’Vi rebelling on Pandora,” junior Risad Ilham said.

On top of the hopes for the storyline, high expectations are set for the film’s CGI. With years of technological improvements in the film industry backing the production, viewers are excited to see the difference in quality compared to the first release in 2009.

“I’m excited for better character modeling and motion capture,” junior Nick Boswell said. “As well as more detailed and realistic scenery.”

Whether The Way of Water meets expectations or not, plans for a third–and possibly final–film are already in the works. The release date is speculated for sometime in 2024. The success of this addition, however, heavily depends on how well the upcoming sequel will be received by viewers.

“I don’t exactly know what I’m going to be walking into,” O’Hair said. “Sequels tend to be a hit or a miss.”